FTX Japan

Bankman-Fried Files to Control $450 Million Seized by the DOJ

  • Bankman-Fried pleaded not guilty to all charges and will be prosecuted later this year.
  • Bankman-Fried’s assets have been fiercely contested among different companies, including the new FTX management.

Embattled FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s lawyers have submitted a plea to keep his 56 million shares of the Robinhood trading app, which are currently valued at $450 million. SBF’s attorneys claim that the 30-year-old needs some of this cash to cover the cost of his criminal defense.

The statement also asked the court to deny demands by debtors to access the funds on the grounds that they had failed to demonstrate their entitlement to the funds as a relief. The legal team acknowledged reports that the US Department of Justice was in the process of seizing the shares, but claimed that considering the stakes involved with the assets, SBF was “compelled to reply.”

According to the filing,

Mr. Bankman-Fried has not been found criminally or civilly liable for fraud, and it is improper for FTX debtors to ask the Court to simply assume that everything Mr. Bankman-Fried ever touched is presumptively fraudulent. The FTX debtors have not shown that they have a reasonable likelihood of succeeding on the merits of a fraudulent transfer claim.

According to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Bankman-Fried acquired his 7.6% stake in Robinhood through his holding firm, Emergent Fidelity Technologies, for an estimated $600 million. Interestingly, a number of companies, including cryptocurrency broker BlockFi, as well as the new management of FTX, are in a battle to control Bankman-Fried’s remaining assets.

Due to the competition for the assets, the new FTX management requested in a filing that the assets “should be frozen until this Court can resolve the issues in a manner that is fair to all creditors of the Debtors.” BlockFi claims that a previous agreement pledged the assets to it.

Last month, Bankman-Fried claimed he had lost his fortune and was left with $100,000 left in his bank account. Things have progressed quickly since then and the former billionaire could be set for a long legal battle. The prosecution of the FTX founder, who has pleaded not guilty to all charges, is scheduled to start in October. A federal judge also restricted Bankman-Fried’s access to and transfer of funds as a condition of his release on bond.

Lawrence Woriji
Lawrence Woriji Verified Author

I have covered some exciting stories in my career as a journalist and find blockchain-related stories very intriguing. I believe Web3 will change the world and want everyone to be a part of it.

Latest News