New SBF interview addresses FTX “backdoor” and money laundering claims

New SBF interview addresses FTX “backdoor” and money laundering claims

Sam Bankman-Fried, the former head of FTX, chose to sit down with Tiffany Fong, a cryptocurrency vlogger, for a series of interviews. In the two videos released following the company’s collapse, SBF discussed various key questions.

FTX “backdoor”

The interview, conducted on November 6, was released on YouTube on November 29. SBF said he decided to speak with the relatively unknown individual because he believed she could approach the interview from a neutral and interesting perspective.

He continued: “We as a society, in my opinion, my humble opinion, have spent quite enough time this week trying to figure out whether anyone living in the FTX residential facility in Albany Bahamas was polyamorous and the answer is too boring for people to believe.”

The recording began with SBF saying, “You don’t get into the situation we got in if you, like, make all the right decisions.” Taking her cue from that, Fong started her interview by asking about the “backdoor” that allowed SBF “to execute commands that could alter the [FTX] company’s financial records without alerting others.”

At first, SBF was surprised by the idea, saying that he didn’t know how to code. He also claimed that he never even tried to open the FTX files. With that, the tone of the conversation was set, aa Fong continued asking hardball questions and SBF responded with openness.

Addressing Ukraine money laundering allegations

SBF said about his political activities, “I donated about the same to both parties. All of my Republican donations were dark.” He addressed rumors about the money laundering of Ukrainian donations:

“The Ukraine one? I wish I could have pulled that off. I wish. I didn’t fully understand the goal of it. I was helping Ukraine launder funds for the Democratic Party? I don’t know why Ukraine is laundering funds for the Democratic Party. I don’t know how they would or why they would.”

Recovery looks slim for FTT coin

In the second undated phone interview, SBF addressed the use of FTX customer funds by Alameda Research. Struggling for words, SBF said that he should have thought more about “what a hyper-correlated cross-scenario looks like. It’s the oldest game in the book of finance.”

SBF also commented on FTX’s FTT coin. “I think it had real value. That being said, there are a few problems. This was f*****g embarrassing given my background. I think it was more legit than many tokens in some ways. It was more economically underpinned than the average token was,” he said.

“Illiquidity didn’t cause the crash,” SBF continued. Instead, it was “the massive correlation of things during market moves, especially when they are triggered by fear over the position itself.”

SBF agreed with Fong that “the recovery looks pretty slim” for international customers. At the same time, “U.S. is a hundred percent. If its Amazon account had not been turned off, “they could already be withdrawing.”

“There was no one person in charge of monitoring risk positions at FTX.” When Fong pressed further on the specifics, there needed to be more luck.

Moderate position and recovery

As FTX collapsed, SBF mentioned he took a moderate stance on the role of Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of Binance. He stated that the platform would be more stable and that it would be able to generate more liquidity.

Tiffany also asked about the impact of the collapse of FTX and the scandal on him. SBF said, “I wake up each day and think about what happened, and I have hours to ruminate on it. […] It’s different than what it seems to other people.”

To wrap it up, he mentioned that FTX U.S.’ users are expected to get 100% money back, and FTX’s clients will get a quarter. “If nothing happens, if I can never do anything again… FTX US will get a dollar on the dollar, FTX will get 25 cents on the dollar.”

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Wayne Jones

Wayne is an all-rounded cryptocurrency writer who has written for several publications in the fintech industry. Having graduated from the University of Essex Colchester, he developed a passion for blockchain technology and has been curious about how the blockchain can modify the traditional financial industry.