(JustPatriots.com)- In a sudden turn of events, disgraced FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried will no longer fight his extradition to the United States, where he will face various fraud charges related to the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange he ran.
Reuters reported recently that after he spent five days in jail in The Bahamas, where he was arrested, SBF will no longer contest the U.S. request to extradite him so he can face the charges.
He announced that decision during a court appearance in The Bahamas on Monday, which is a switch from his original stance when he said he planned to contest that move.
When SBF said that in court, however, it took his lawyers by surprise. There was much confusion in the courtroom as a result, media outlets reported, and SBF was sent back to prison by the judge in the case.
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Jerone Roberts, who is SBF’s lawyer in The Bahamas, wasn’t aware that his client had changed his intentions. He commented:
“Whatever trail that got him here this morning it did not involve me.”
A report in Bloomberg cited sources with direct knowledge of SBF’s decision who said that the FTX founder believes he’ll be able to obtain bail once in the United States.
For now, though, he heads back to the Bahamian jail he was already spending time in. The next court date in his trial is set for February 8, though it’s possible that an additional hearing could be set before that date.
SBF was arrested last week in The Bahamas, which is where FTX was based. The arrest was made at the request of United States authorities. On December 13, SBF was charged with eight crimes that include money laundering and wire fraud for his role in the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange he ran.
Last month, FTX filed for bankruptcy in what became a very publicized collapse. FTX was once the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, which allowed users to buy, sell and store various digital assets, and also bet on the future prices of crypto coins through derivatives.
It quickly became clear, though, that the company didn’t have enough funds to back all the assets of its customers. The company’s newly-appointed CEO, John J. Ray III, said recently that the reason for this was Alameda Research — a trading firm that SBF also founded — could use customer assets at FTX for its own use without any oversight.
SBF has denied that he knew he was doing anything illegal. After the collapse was made public — but before he was arrested — SBF held many public interviews in which he said he was going to work to get the assets for his customers back.
In total, there were at least $8 billion of assets that went missing once the cryptocurrency exchange collapsed.
In the time since, Congress has been scrambling to try to regulate cryptocurrency better, with some proposing new regulatory bills, and others calling for hearings in the Senate.