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Shocking Allegations Emerge: FTX Exchange Sues Co-Founder’s Parents for Millions

In a startling turn of events, the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX has initiated legal action against the parents of its co-founder and former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried. The exchange seeks to recover millions of dollars, alleging that Joseph Bankman and Barbara Fried, both prominent professors at Stanford University Law School, diverted funds from their son’s companies for personal gain and channeled money into organizations serving their interests.

A Complex Legal Battle Unfolds

FTX and its sister hedge fund, Alameda Research, filed a complaint in federal bankruptcy court, claiming that the pair had exploited their positions within the FTX enterprise. The complaint accuses Bankman and Fried of enriching themselves, directly and indirectly, at the expense of the debtors.

The allegations extend to a $10 million gift to the couple from their son in early 2022, sourced from Alameda, and the acquisition of a $16.4 million property in the Bahamas, allegedly funded by FTX Trading. Furthermore, the complaint highlights correspondence between the accused and FTX insiders, suggesting Bankman’s active involvement in decision-making at the exchange. Bankman even took a leave of absence from Stanford to join the FTX payroll.

Allegations of Insider Knowledge

The debtors claim that Bankman and Fried were either aware or should have been aware of the financial instability of the companies from which they received funds. Additionally, Bankman is accused of attempting to silence a whistleblower, further complicating the legal battle.

The complaint alleges, “Bankman and Fried deployed their decades of experience as sophisticated law professors and a veneer of legitimacy not to help the FTX Group but rather to plunder it in order to enrich themselves and their pet causes.” It further asserts that Bankman directed $5.5 million to be donated to Stanford, where he was employed at the time, while Fried successfully secured tens of millions of dollars in donations to MTG, a political action committee she co-founded.

Legal Remedies Sought

The plaintiffs are now seeking legal redress, including compensatory damages, the return of funds and properties acquired by Bankman and Fried in connection with FTX and its affiliates, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.

Responding to the allegations, attorneys for Bankman and Fried, Sean Hecker, and Michael Tremonte, issued a joint statement vehemently denying FTX’s claims. They characterized the lawsuit as baseless and accused FTX of attempting to intimidate their clients. Hecker and Tremonte expressed concerns that the lawsuit was an attempt to undermine the forthcoming trial of their child, Sam Bankman-Fried, scheduled to begin next month.

Ongoing Legal Saga

This legal saga has seen various twists and turns, with Sam Bankman-Fried’s arrest in the Bahamas in December and his subsequent extradition to the United States. He faced multiple federal charges related to the collapse of his cryptocurrency empire. Bankman-Fried was released on a $250 million bond, co-signed by his parents and two others, only to be placed under house arrest at his parents’ Palo Alto, California, residence. In August, he was once again remanded into custody after prosecutors alleged that he had attempted to intimidate a key witness in his case.

Despite the mounting legal challenges, Sam Bankman-Fried maintains his innocence, pleading not guilty to all charges. As the trial looms on the horizon, the cryptocurrency community watches closely, awaiting the resolution of this high-stakes legal battle that could have far-reaching implications for the industry.

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