Cryptocurrency news continues to be punctuated by developments around FTX and its former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried. The latest this time is that he will testify at the United States House Committee on Financial Services hearing scheduled for 13 December 2022.
His suggestion on Friday that he would testify before the committee comes just days after he noted he would not until he finished reviewing everything that happened. For context, that’s him saying he wasn’t ready to face lawmakers. Yet he has talked pretty nonstop since FTX filed for bankruptcy – so, why not take part in the hearing?
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On 2 December, Rep. Maxine Waters, Chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services had invited SBF to participate in the committee’s hearing on FTX’s implosion. As noted above, SBF appeared not that enthusiastic about the idea. But backlash from the crypto community and calls for the House Committee to subpoena him followed that response.
Although Bankman-Fried now says he’ll participate, he suggests he’s not likely to be that helpful. He offered in his latest tweet:
“I still do not have access to much of my data — professional or personal. So there is a limit to what I will be able to say, and I won’t be as helpful as I’d like. But as the committee still thinks it would be useful, I am willing to testify on the 13th.”
FTX’s implosion puts SBF on the spot
Bankman-Fried, aka SBF, is the former CEO of FTX – a cryptocurrency exchange he founded in May 2019.
But the crypto exchange’s collapse last month is now the subject of several investigations in the US and elsewhere across the globe. In the US, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Justice Department are looking into FTX and Bankman-Fried’s misuse of customer funds.
There is also a probe into SBF’s role in a potential market manipulation in June, when a crypto meltdown ensued following the demise of Terra (LUNA) and TerraUSD (UST).
Amid all these, Bankman-Fried has maintained he is not a fraud and has over the past few weeks done some interesting interviews – albeit ones that have irked the crypto community even more. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has even dubbed the ex-FTX chief as “one of the greatest fraudsters in history.”
Zhao said in a Twitter thread earlier this week that Bankman-Fried “is also a master manipulator when it comes to media and key opinion leaders.”