FTX founder expected to drop fight against extradition to US
Sam Bankman-Fried arrived at a courthouse in the Bahamas early Monday and is expected to tell a judge he will not fight extradition to the US, where he faces multiple criminal and civil charges related to the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX.
The decision comes just a week after Bankman-Fried’s lawyers had initially said that they planned to fight extradition. An extradition hearing had been scheduled for Febuary 8. His turnabout could speed up the timetable for him to be sent to the US.
Bahamian authorities arrested Bankman-Fried last Monday at the request of the US government.
The former FTX CEO faces criminal charges in the US, including wire fraud and money laundering, as well as civil charges. The 30-year-old could potentially spend the rest of his life in jail.
Bankman-Fried’s downfall, from crypto evangelist to pariah, occurred with stunning speed. FTX filed for bankruptcy protection on November 11 when it ran out of money after the cryptocurrency equivalent of a bank run.
Before the bankruptcy, Bankman-Fried was considered by many in Washington and on Wall Street as a wunderkind of digital currencies, someone who could help take them mainstream, in part by working with policymakers to bring more oversight and trust to the industry.