FTX logo with crypto coins with 100 Dollar bill are displayed for illustration. FTX has filed for bankruptcy within the US, in search of court protection because it looks for a option to return money to users.
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Securities regulators within the Bahamas conceded that they ordered the transfer of FTX digital assets from company wallets into their very own custody, citing the authority granted to them by the Supreme Court of the Bahamas and difficult FTX’s assertion that the U.S. Chapter 11 bankruptcy processes applied to them.
In a press statement Thursday evening, the Securities Commission of the Bahamas (SCB) said it had exercised “its powers as a regulator” and directed the transfer of “all digital assets” of FTX Digital Markets, a Bahamian subsidiary of the FTX empire.
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The worth of the assets is unknown. Crypto research firm Elliptic, nevertheless, believes that the $477 million theft reported over this weekend was tied to moves by Bahamian regulators.
Statements from each the Bahamas and U.S. attorneys suggest “that the ‘hack’ was actually the seizure of FTX assets by the Bahamian government,” Elliptic wrote.
The filing struck back at an emergency filing by FTX in U.S. court which challenged the standing of the Bahamian liquidators and asked the Delaware Bankruptcy Court to intervene and implement an automatic stay, a typical feature of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.
That filing accused the Bahamian government of seizing FTX assets and moving them into their very own custody, an accusation borne out by the SCB’s own statement.
Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and former CEO of FTX and the ex-majority owner of a fancy web of FTX-Alameda Research subsidiaries, was accused by FTX’s lawyers of working with Bahamian regulators to maneuver digital assets out of FTX’s custody and right into a Fireblocks asset custody account.
Bankman-Fried was effectively within the custody of the Bahamian government, the FTX filing observed.
“It shouldn’t be the understanding of the Commission that FDM [FTX Digital Markets] is a celebration to the US Chapter 11 Bankruptcy proceedings,” the Bahamian regulator’s release read.
Bankman-Fried, securities regulators and FTX’s lawyers haven’t yet responded to requests for comment.
— CNBC’s Mackenzie Sigalos contributed to this report.