Property linked to FTX customer funds pulled from market
According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, the seller of a property that was tied to Sam Bankman-political Fried's expenditures removed the property off the market as a demonstration of "good faith" after discovering that the property was linked to FTX customer money.
The townhouse, which can be found in the Capitol Hill neighbourhood of Washington, D.C., just a few blocks away from the United States Capitol, is owned by Guarding Against Pandemics, a charitable organisation that was founded by Gabriel Bankman-Fried, the brother of the former CEO of the stock exchange that went bankrupt.
In documents submitted to the court in January by FTX's new management, the company said that client cash had been improperly used to acquire the property for $3.3 million. The listing for the property was removed by Guarding Against Pandemics after it was brought to the attention of several media outlets by the real estate agent.
The Wall Street Journal was informed by a spokeswoman for Guarding Against Pandemics that Gabriel is no longer affiliated with the group. The creditors of FTX have only recently sent subpoenas against Bankman-mother, Fried's Barbara Fried, and Gabriel, alleging that they did not answer to prior information demands and demanding that they provide certain papers.
According to the property records, the charitable organisation attempted to sell the property to lobbyist Mitch Bainwol and his wife, Susan Bainwol, for the same sum that it paid for the property in April of 2022.
The three-story property has a total area of 4,100 square feet, four bedrooms, and was purportedly being used as an office by the group, with workstations being set up in a variety of rooms across the building. The real estate business that was in charge of the listing organised a few open houses; nevertheless, they did not get any bids to buy the property.
Prosecutors in the United States are looking into the contributions that FTX made to various political parties and politicians. With a contribution of $5.2 million, Bankman-Fried ranked as the second-largest "CEO donor" to Joe Biden's presidential campaign for the year 2020. A few days before the midterm elections in November 2022, he acknowledged to being a "major contributor" to both of Washington's political parties. These elections were for the House of Representatives and the Senate.
Since the bankruptcy petition was filed on November 11, the new management team of the exchange has been hard at work trying to locate cash with which to repay the exchange's creditors. Andy Dietderich, an attorney for FTX, said that as of the beginning of the year, the exchange had "recovered $5 billion in cash and liquid cryptocurrency."