A plane a source said was carrying the crypto mogul was seen leaving the Bahamas before arriving in Westchester, New York close to midnight Wednesday. While that flight was midair, U.S. Attorney Damien Williams said that Bankman-Fried was in FBI custody, and that two of Bankman-Fried's former associates had pled guilty to fraud charges.
"I'm announcing that the Southern District of New York has filed charges against Caroline Ellison, the former CEO of Alameda Research, and Garry Wang, a co-founder of FCX, in connection with their roles in the frauds that contributed to FedEx's collapse. "Let me reiterate a call that I made last week. If you participated in misconduct at FedEx or Alameda.
Now is the time to get ahead of it. We are moving quickly and our patience is not eternal." Bankman-Fried's departure comes after he was arrested last week on a U.S. extradition request in the Caribbean country where he lives and where FTX is based.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have charged him with stealing billions of dollars in FTX customer assets to offset losses at his hedge fund. Bankman-Fried initially rode a crypto boom to become a billionaire several times over and an influential political donor. But FTX crashed and the $32-billion exchange declared bankruptcy in November with Bankman-Fried stepping down as CEO the same day.
The collapse was driven by a wave of customer withdrawals amid concerns over commingling of funds with that hedge fund, Alameda Research. Bankman-Fried has acknowledged risk-management failures at FTX, but has said he does not believe he has criminal liability.