Officials have charged Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the failed crypto exchange FTX, with bribing at least one Chinese official.
New charges published in the US allege the Sam Bankman-Fried approved bribes of “at least $40m” (£32.5m) to acquire entry to trading accounts frozen by Chinese authorities, Western media said.
The charges will be an addition to an ongoing fraud investigation from last year after the collapse of FTX.
Bankman-Fried claimed not guilty to the allegations earlier this year. He is currently under house arrest at his parents’ home in California, pending the beginning of his trial.
The revised charge alleges that Bankman-Fried approved the bribes after Chinese authorities froze nearly $1 billion (£811 million) worth of cryptocurrency accounts belonging to his trading company Alameda Research, the Wall Street Journal wrote.
According to the filing, the accounts were authorized after the transfer, which went to a personal online wallet.
The statement declared that the bribe allegedly ensued months of tries to access the funds. Bankman-Fried considered it frozen as a domain of an investigation into the trading firm.
The incident came following FTX’s theatrical collapse last year when reports regarding the company’s finances led to a flurry of withdrawals. Those forced the company into bankruptcy.
FTX returned more than five billion dollars in assets
The company’s lawyer said that failed cryptocurrency exchange FTX had recovered over five billion dollars in assets.
However, on Wednesday, the US Bankruptcy Court was told that the extent of the customers’ losses was unknown.
Prosecutors accused former FTX CEO Sam Bankman Fried of masterminding a “historic” fraud that could cost billions of dollars to investors, buyers, and lenders. Fried pleaded not guilty to defrauding investors.