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Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried Refuses To Testify In Banking Senate

Sam Bankman-Fried, Founder and Managing Director of FTX Cryptocurrency Derivatives Exchange, speaks during a Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee hearing in Washington, DC, Wednesday, February 9, 2022.

Sarah Silbiger | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried is refusing to testify at a hearing this week about his company’s implosion, the Senate Banking Committee announced Monday.

Lawyers for the crypto platform founder also said Bankman-Fried, who is based in the Bahamas, will not accept service of a subpoena to compel his testimony before the panel, the senators said.

Bankman-Fried is scheduled to appear at a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Tuesday that will focus on the collapse of his business.

In a joint statement, Senate Banking Chairman Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Ranking Member Pat Toomey, R-Pa., said they “offered Sam Bankman-Fried two different dates to testify before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, and are willing to host virtual testimony.”

“He declined in an unprecedented abdication of responsibility,” they said. “Since Bankman-Fried’s attorney has said he does not wish to accept service of a subpoena, we will continue to work to have him appear before the Committee. He owes the American people an explanation.” , they said.

Earlier Monday, Bankman-Fried said he was “not currently” scheduled to testify at the hearing. In an interview on Twitter Spaces, he also noted that he was “open and willing” to have a conversation about appearing before the committee.

Brown and Toomey recently threatened in a letter to Bankman-Fried that they would subpoena him if he “chooses not to appear” at Wednesday’s hearing.

Bankman-Fried was called to testify before the Senate committee after his FTX crypto exchange crashed within days. Prior to the company’s implosion, FTX reportedly transferred billions of dollars in client funds to Bankman-Fried’s trading company, Alameda Research.

In the letter to Bankman-Fried requesting his testimony, Brown and Toomey wrote that “there still remain significant unanswered questions about how client funds were misappropriated, how clients were prevented from withdrawing their own money and how you orchestrated a cover-up”.


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