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SBF $250m bond co-signers named, Tornado Cash developer to stay in jail, El Salvador plans ‘Bitcoin Embassy’ in Texas

SBF $250 million bond co-signers identities revealed

Unsealed court documents revealed the co-signers of FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s $250 million bond on Wednesday. The disgraced ex-CEO of the defunct crypto exchange was released on bail in December. Four guarantors had signed the bond. His parents were two of them. Larry Kramer and Andreas Paepcke have now been named as the other two. Kramer is president at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and dean emeritus at Stanford Law School. Paepcke is a senior research scientist at Stanford University. Bankman-Fried’s parents are also on the faculty of Stanford.

The judge overseeing the court case decided to unseal the names at the end of January. Since then, punters have been betting on the identities of the unnamed sureties, with Skype co-founder Jaan Tallinn and Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao being two frontrunners on betting site Polymarket.

Bankman-Fried is facing a federal trial in October. He pleaded not guilty in January to all criminal fraud charges.

Coinbase claims to be compliant with proposed SEC custodian rules

Coinbase executives have voiced confidence that they will be able to meet the Securities and Exchange Commission’s new proposal to raise the bar on which custodians will be allowed to offer crypto services. Industry watchers have criticised the proposal, arguing that it will block access to crypto entirely for most US investors. While other crypto service providers such as Kraken and Paxos face SEC fines and enforcement, Coinbase has so far managed to evade penalty.

Pertsev remains in jail

Following a hearing Wednesday, Tornado Cash developer Alexey Pertsev will remain behind bars in anticipation of his money laundering trial. Dutch authorities deemed him a flight risk after Pertsev’s arrest in August. Edward Snowden and many leading crypto figures have criticised the secrecy surrounding Pertsev’s detention and voiced concerns about the ethical ramifications of prosecuting people for publishing code. The next hearing for Pertsev takes place in April. Pertsev denies the charges against him.

Polygon zk-knowledge

Polygon is moving forward with a hard date for its upcoming zkEVM rollup release. The “zero-knowledge” rollup, which bundles transactions and reduces the workload placed on the Ethereum network, has been hailed as a much-needed scaling solution for Ethereum. It will be released on March 27. Ethereum’s scaling issues have caused incredibly high fees during active market periods, where transaction demand inflates gas prices to prohibitive levels. The update could remedy some of these issues.

El Salvador setting up ‘Bitcoin Embassy’ in Texas

El Salvador will open what it dubs a “Bitcoin Embassy” in Texas, the country’s US ambassador says. The nation was the first to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender in 2021 under the leadership of President Nayib Bukele. Bukele remains in office and, despite a fierce market downturn since El Salvador’s adoption of the currency, continues to champion the asset abroad. The embassy will serve an educational and promotional function in the state of Texas.

Iris Energy loses $144 million in 2022

Bitcoin mining company Iris Energy’s Q4 numbers showed $144 million in losses, despite outperforming analyst revenue estimates. Citing a “challenging year” for the industry, co-CEO Daniel Roberts remained optimistic about his company’s balance sheet, citing plans to triple hashrates and put new mining equipment to use. Crypto mining has seen a particularly rough year in general, as Ethereum’s move to proof-of-stake in September of 2022 forced Ethereum miners to change assets or close up shop.

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