Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced founder of collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been arrested in the Bahamas.
In a statement, the attorney general of the Bahamas, says: "SBF’s arrest followed receipt of formal notification from the United States that it has filed criminal charges against SBF and is likely to request his extradition."
He is scheduled to appear in a magistrates' court today in the Caribbean country's capital, Nassau.
FTX filed for bankruptcy last month, leaving its fifty largest creditors $3.1 billion out of pocket.
A poster child for the cryptocurrency movement, Bankman-Fried's fall from grace has been sudden and dramatic.
A report by newly-installed FTX CEO John Ray last month, blasted his predecessor for "a complete failure of corporate controls and a complete absence of trustworthy financial information".
The new CEO also warned that a "substantial portion" of assets held with FTX may be "missing or stolen" and reveals that corporate funds were "used to purchase homes and other personal items for employees and advisors".
The SEC's director of enforcement, Gurbir S. Grewal, welcomed the news from the Bahamas: "We commend our law enforcement partners for working to secure the arrest of Mr. Sam Bankman-Fried in the Bahamas on federal criminal charges. The Securities and Exchange Commission has separately authorised charges relating to Mr. Bankman-Fried’s violations of our securities laws, which will be filed publicly (Tuesday) in the Southern District of New York."
The SEC's charge sheet against SBF is lengthy and damning, claiming Bankman-Fried was "orchestrating a massive, years-long fraud, diverting billions of dollars of the trading platform’s customer funds for his own personal benefit and to help grow his crypto empire".
SEC Chair Gary Gensle says: "We allege that Sam Bankman-Fried built a house of cards on a foundation of deception while telling investors that it was one of the safest buildings in crypto."
Prior to his arrest Bankman-Fried was scheduled to testify today before the US House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services. According to a copy of his testimony obtaind by Forbes, he was to begin his address with the words: "I fucked up."