Assets belonging to former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried have been seized by the National Financial Crimes Investigation Authority, known locally as MASAK, following the collapse of his main business.
Official notification of Turkey’s MASAK outlined the preliminary findings and actions taken against Bankman-Fried bankruptcy proceedings its main activities. MASAK opened an investigation on November 14.
Cointelegraph translated MASAK’s latest announcement, which highlighted three key points from the investigation.
The Turkish investigative body found that FTX failed to securely store user funds, embezzled customer funds through questionable transactions, and manipulated market supply and demand by having customers buy and sell listed cryptocurrencies that were not backed by actual cryptocurrency holdings.
As a result of these findings, MASAK seized the assets of Bankman-Fried and associated companies after finding a strong “suspicion of criminality” on the above counts.
The FTX TR website is still active, but only displays a message to users instructing them to receive account balances. Users are requested to share the IBAN information and Turkish ID number of their respective Turkish Lira accounts through the link.
LinkedIn post of FTX TR noted that the exchange had over 110,000 users and processed an average monthly transaction volume of $500 to $600 million since the launch of its mobile app in early 2022. The company employed 27 people.
The post also noted that the company was trying to transfer user balances in FTX TR to their bank accounts.
FTX TR was managed by a former Binance executive who previously managed global business growth in Turkey, CIS and EU. Cointelegraph reached out to the former head of FTX TR to ascertain whether the local operation was aware of its parent company’s improper trading activities and will update this article accordingly.
According to local media messagethe FTX website attracted an average of 187,000 unique visitors per month from Turkey, the sixth highest number by country.
FTX is now undergoing bankruptcy proceedings led by new CEO John Ray III. The man responsible for unraveling the infamous collapse of Enron in the early 2000s described the FTX debacle as the worst he has seen in his professional career.
A strategic overview of FTX’s global assets currently takes place within the framework of bankruptcy proceedings with the aim of maximizing the recoverable value for the parties involved.