WATCH: FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried takes responsibility that ‘people got hurt’

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Former CEO of cryptocurrency giant FTX Sam Bankman-Fried spoke with ABC News in an interview that aired on <i>Good Morning America,</i> Dec. 1, 2022. (ABC News)

WATCH: FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried takes responsibility that ‘people got hurt’

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Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of cryptocurrency giant FTX, denied knowing “that there was any improper use of customer funds” but said, “a lot of people got hurt, and that’s on me.”

In an interview with ABC News’s George Stephanopoulos, Bankman-Fried admitted that he should have been more watchful, taking responsibility for how the collapse of both FTX and trading firm Alameda Research affected customers.

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“I really, deeply wish that I had taken a lot more responsibility for understanding what the details were of what was going on,” Bankman-Fried said. “I should have been on top of this, and I feel really, really bad and regretful that I wasn’t,” he said. “A lot of people got hurt, and that’s on me.”

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FTX filed for bankruptcy in November after cryptocurrency rival Binance pulled out of a deal to acquire the company amid a liquidity crunch. The deal failed when Bankman-Fried chose to withhold the FTX’s U.S. operation from the acquisition.

Former Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison reportedly claimed that FTX was using deposits to pay Alameda Research creditors. Bankman-Fried denied knowledge of those details.

“I was vaguely aware that that was how some wires were being sent in the first place,” Bankman-Fried said, to which Stephanopoulos asked, “Didn’t that set off alarm bells in your head?”

“So there are a lot of people who were involved in that process and, look, I really deeply wish that I had taken like a lot more responsibility for understanding what the details were of what was going on there. I knew that legal was involved. I knew that other groups at the company were involved that, you know, there were agreements drafted up,” the former cryptocurrency CEO replied, admitting he is responsible in the end. “Ultimately, absolutely. Look, I should have been on top of this and I feel really, really bad and regretful that I wasn’t and a lot of people got hurt and that’s on me.”

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Following FTX’s collapse, Bankman-Fried’s net worth plummeted from $16 billion to no longer appearing on Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. Bankman-Fried said he only has $100,000 left in his bank account.

The former cryptocurrency CEO said he is focusing on how he can help, hoping he can “[make] it up to everyone who got hurt.”

© 2022 Washington Examiner

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