Sam Bankman-Fried: I Didn't Flee to Argentina

Speculation had swirled that he left the Bahamas
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2022 12:00 AM CST
Updated Nov 14, 2022 5:21 AM CST
Sam Bankman-Fried: I Didn't Flee Bahamas
FILE - Signage for the FTX Arena, where the Miami Heat basketball team plays, is illuminated on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, in Miami.   (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier, File)

Sam Bankman-Fried, once the wealthiest person in the world under 30 and now reportedly worth nearly nothing following the collapse of FTX, the cryptocurrency exchange he co-founded and ran, says he has not fled to Argentina. There was speculation that he had, and FlightRadar24 tweeted as much, but when Reuters asked whether that was true, he responded via text, "Nope," and said he was still in the Bahamas, where he established full-time residency last year.

Bankman-Fried was removed as CEO after FTX filed for bankruptcy, and the DOJ, the SEC, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission are all investigating him. As CNBC reports, Argentina wouldn't be an ideal place to escape those probes, since it has an extradition treaty with the US. Bankman-Fried, once seen as "the savior of crypto," is now the target of many upset customers and investors, the AP reports, noting that he could eventually face civil and/or criminal charges.

Meanwhile, FTX, after experiencing what the AP calls "the crypto equivalent of a bank run," is now short billions of dollars, and hundreds of millions disappeared in an apparent hack. The Royal Bahamas Police Force is also investigating FTX, which is headquartered there, CNN reports. "With FTX going down, we will see cascading effects,” Changpeng Zhao, founder of Binance, the biggest crypto exchange in the world, warned last week. “Especially for those close to the FTX ecosystem, they will be negatively affected.” (Read more Sam Bankman-Fried stories.)

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