Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX, and the now-defunct venture capital firm Alameda Research looked closely at SBF’s most recent transactions and decided that he may have broken the terms of his bail.
All of Bankman-Fried’s remaining assets were moved to a new address on December 27, just a few days after he was released from jail on a $250 million bail, to an address he had personally confirmed as his in September 2020.
In the transaction, about $800 worth of ethereum was sent to an unknown address, where it was met by nearly $500,000 worth of cryptocurrencies from many different addresses, many of which were well-known Alameda Research addresses.
Even though the former CEO of FTX denied that he didn’t do anything on-chain, he did admit to owning one of the addresses listed in the tweet. A CBS News story from December 22 said that Bankman-Fried’s bond had a rule that said he couldn’t spend more than $1,000 without the court’s permission.
An in-depth look at on-chain data
Since it was first added to the blockchain on December 27, the newly created address has done an amazing 105 transactions: 52 on December 27 and 53 on December 28. A total of $690,641 worth of cryptocurrencies were sent to the account. 32 transfers from known Alameda Research addresses made up $367,083 of this amount.
Only five spending transactions were sent from the new address, but they used up all of the money in the wallet and left it empty. Most of the money was sent to two addresses that started with 0xE5cC0 and 0x64e9B. The address that started with 0xE5cC0 got a transaction for $60,450, and the address that started with 0x64e9B got two transactions for $605,280 and $24,080.
The address 0xE5cC0, which got $60,450, only sent one transaction, sending the whole amount to an address that has already handled well over a million transactions since April 21, 2021. Even after filtering for transactions that have happened since December 27, 3,331 of the 6,824 transactions sent from the address are spending transactions. It would be hard to keep track of this transfer any longer, which is a shame.
On the other hand, most of the money went to an address that had just been set up and hadn’t been used before December 27. There were 30 incoming transfers to the 0x64e9B address that added up to $4,169,000. One of these transfers was $800 from the verified Bankman-Fried address to the new address. Since many incoming transactions were returning Metamask and Uniswap (UNI) swaps, this total might be more than what this address spent.
With the 0x64e9B address, digital assets worth more than $860,000 were sent to the Instant Exchange Fixed Float. Since the cash was given to a centrally managed custodian in exchange for another digital asset, the transaction modification is no longer valid. In another notable outbound transaction, $186,000 was sent to a null renBTC address, which is a way to move the token between blockchains.
Did Sam Bankman-Fried violate the terms of his bail?
On-chain statistics and an old tweet show that the former FTX did send digital assets worth about $800 to an address that was later used to deplete Alameda Research addresses. But it’s hard to prove that Bankman-Fried only sent $800 worth of cryptocurrency to the same address that also got large transfers from Alameda Research and other parties, even though this suggests that Bankman-Fried is probably behind those transactions.
Only $200 of his $1,000 budget is left for transactions that can’t be confused with anything but Bankman-Fried.
We can’t be sure, though, that he doesn’t have permission to do this. Given that he says he didn’t make any transfers and that the judge didn’t give him permission to do so, it seems unlikely that the transactions were legal and that the judge gave him permission to move a large amount of money. But it is impossible to know if he has done so without more tests, which will most likely be done by the police.