May 19, 2024

‘Fuck regulators,’ said SBF behind closed doors: Report

The disgraced crypto executive frequently praised the need for crypto regulation in public.

Despite publicly supporting drafting crypto regulation to protect customers, disgraced crypto exchange FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) appears to have shared a deep disdain for regulators.

During the ongoing FTX criminal trial, Assistant U.S. Prosecutor Danielle Sassoon inquired if the crypto executive could recall his previous Twitter statements regarding his support of blockchain regulation to protect customers. “I don’t remember,” said SBF. “But in private, you said, fuck regulators, right,” asked Sassoon. 

“I said that once,” SBF replied. Among other profanities, the former crypto executive also stated that he viewed a “subset of people” on Crypto Twitter as “dumb motherfuckers.” Before his arrest, SBF testified in a 2021 hearing before the U.S. House Financial Services Committee on crypto regulation. 

You said it [regulations] was P.R. [Public Relations]?” Asked Sassoon. “I said something like that,” SBF responded.

During additional questioning, SBF also claimed that the benefits of helping to draft crypto regulation included helping FTX take market share from competitor exchange Binance. Before FTX’s collapse last November, SBF revealed that the exchange, along with sister hedge fund Alameda Research, held close to $15 billion in customers’ deposits, with $10 billion reported missing.

On Nov. 8, 2022, Binance founder Changpeng Zhao signed a letter of intent to acquire FTX. The deal fell apart just a day later after Binance reportedly viewed FTX’s books and discovered the asset discrepancy. SBF recalled that on Nov. 7, 2022, customer net withdrawals amounted to $4 billion, or 100 times the volume of an average trading day, sending the company into a deep liquidity crisis.

 The criminal trial of Sam Bankman-Fried is ongoing and is expected to wrap up by early next week. 

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