Biden Admin Meets With Crypto Billionaire Before Fraud Indictment

• Sam Bankman-Fried, the former crypto billionaire and FTX co-founder, met with senior Biden administration officials before he was indicted for financial fraud.
• The meetings involved discussions about “pandemic prevention” and the “crypto industry”.
• The White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre noted that there were limitations on what she could say to the press regarding SBF’s donations to the president Joe Biden.

Sam Bankman-Fried, the former crypto billionaire and co-founder of FTX, made headlines in late December 2022 when it was revealed that he had met with senior Biden administration officials prior to being indicted for financial fraud.

According to public filings, SBF met with the White House senior adviser Steve Richetti on three occasions, in addition to meeting with the White House deputy chief of staff Bruce Reed once. SBF had donated a significant amount of money to the current president Joe Biden, including a $5.2 million donation to the Democrat leader’s campaign.

At a Dec. 13 press briefing, a reporter asked White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre if the administration would return the funds. “I’m covered here by the Hatch Act,” Jean-Pierre remarked. She noted that there were limitations on what she could say to the press. “Anything that’s connected to political contributions, from here I would have to refer you to the DNC,” Jean-Pierre added.

When asked about the visits, Jean-Pierre told the press the meetings involved discussions about “pandemic prevention” and the “crypto industry”. On Tuesday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre addressed questions from the press regarding SBF, marking the second time the Biden administration has addressed the issue.

While the White House has yet to confirm or deny the details of the meetings, the fact that SBF met with senior Biden administration officials before he was indicted for financial fraud has raised questions about the nature of the meetings and the impact of SBF’s donations on the political landscape. It remains to be seen if the Biden administration will return the funds or if any further action will be taken.