Sam Bankman-Fried, the co-founder and former chief executive officer of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, should be blocked from bringing up artificial intelligence firm Anthropic’s latest fundraising efforts in his defense against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), prosecutors said in a court filing on Sunday.

See related article: Little-known FTX co-founder Gary Wang testifies in Sam Bankman-Fried trial

Fast Facts

  • The DOJ alleged that FTX’s US$500 million stake in Anthropic came from customer funds.
  • FTX took a stake in Anthropic in 2022 before the exchange filed for bankruptcy nearly one year ago. FTX was looking to sell its shares in June but reportedly hit the pause button by the end of the month.
  • Founded in 2021 by employees of OpenAI, the firm behind ChatGPT, Anthropic is one of FTX’s most sought-after assets and one of the most trending AI companies. The firm is in early talks to raise an additional US$2 billion, shortly after Amazon’s US$4 billion investment in the company.
  • FTX filed for bankruptcy in the U.S. on Nov. 11, 2022, with over 100 affiliates. Bankman-Fried has been charged with seven counts of wire fraud and money laundering and faces up to 115 years in prison.  
  • On Friday, Gary Wang, the co-founder and former chief technology officer of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, testified that Alameda Research had a special line of credit of up to US$65 billion for the exchange, allowing FTX’s sister hedge fund to spend US$8 billion in customer funds.
  • At the end of Friday’s hearing, the DOJ said that prosecutors expect to call in Caroline Ellison next on Tuesday, the former chief executive officer of Alameda Research. 

See related article: Crypto trust on trial: Bankman-Fried faces judgment