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SBF faces bribe charges, Safemoon suffers $8.9m hack, CFTC plays tug-of-war with SEC over ETH

SBF faces bribe charges, Safemoon suffers $8.9m hack, CFTC plays tug-of-war with SEC over ETH
Galaxy Digital founder Mike Novogratz, left, is bullish about crypto and CFTC chair Rostin Behnam, right, says crypto are commodities.

SBF hit with new indictment over alleged China bribes

Federal prosecutors charged former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried for bribing Chinese officials, in a new indictment on Tuesday.

The allegations refer to an event that took place in November of 2021, when FTX’s sister company Alameda Research faced a freeze order in China.

Federal prosecutors allege that Bankman-Fried and others “directed and caused the transfer” of at least $40 million in cryptocurrency to Chinese officials to unfreeze some of these accounts.

Bankman-Fried’s charges include wire fraud, conspiracy, and others, as well as civil complaints from both the Securities Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

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CFTC declares ETH a commodity despite SEC

Speaking of those regulators, the CFTC’s chair Rostin Behnam reaffirmed Tuesday that his agency designates Ethereum’s ETH token as a commodity rather than a security, as has been asserted by the SEC.

The row between the two agencies has ramped up in 2023, with both rolling out lawsuits against major entities such as Binance, Coinbase, and Kraken.

These cases often claim defendants operate businesses without registering products as either securities or commodities.

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Behnam stated that “cautious” effort would be required to create an effective regulatory framework for crypto in the US, citing the EU’s incoming MiCA legislation as an example of America falling behind.

NOW READ: Binance’s CFTC suit a sign ‘other regulators follow’ in crackdown on crypto giants

FDIC tells Signature Bank crypto clients to close accounts by April 5

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has told depositors of bankrupt Signature Bank that accounts with crypto links must be closed by April 5.

The FDIC order comes following a government-ordered $4 billion exclusion of all crypto-related business as part of the bank’s restructuring.

New York Community Bancorp. won the bid to handle the remainder of Signature’s assets.

The FDIC informed all affected users that if their accounts are not closed by the deadline, they will be shut automatically and clients will receive cheques for their assets.

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Voyager sends $150m USDC to Circle to be offramped

Failed crypto lender Voyager sent $150 million in USDC stablecoin to issuer Circle yesterday as part of a plan to offload its assets.

The transfer comes ahead of a deal for Voyager to be sold to Binance.US, and would see Voyager’s crypto assets converted into real US dollars.

On Monday a federal judge granted an emergency halt to the deal, at the request of the US Department of Justice – the same day that the CFTC sued Binance.

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Exploiter hits Safemoon for $8.9m

An exploiter has made off with $8.9 million stolen from DeFi exchange Safemoon’s liquidity pool, after exploiting a bug.

The exploiter used a vulnerability to inflate Safemoon’s SFM token price and sell as much of it as possible, draining the liquidity pool of its paired asset WBNB until the pool was empty.

Safemoon’s team took to Twitter to announce plans to “resolve the issue,” but it remains to be seen if the funds will be recoverable.

NOW READ: Euler hacker returns $176m of stolen funds amid ‘ongoing’ negotiations

Galaxy Digital founder bullish on crypto

Galaxy Digital Holdings founder Mike Novogratz said in a Tuesday earnings call that crypto’s outlook is positive.

He cited Beijing concessions to Hong Kong’s drive to become a crypto hub as a key shift in the industry.

Novogratz echoed sentiments shared by other recent commentators that America may lose crypto market share as increased regulations drive companies to friendlier jurisdictions such as Hong Kong.

Despite China’s hardline stance on crypto in recent years – which includes a mainland crypto ban – Chinese banks have been working with Hong Kong to facilitate eased restrictions on retail investors in the region.

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