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Cryptogambling / FTX’s stolen funds moving on the verge of founder’s impending trial

FTX’s stolen funds moving on the verge of founder’s impending trial

Publish Date: 02/10/2023
Stock Photo, tags: stolen funds - upload.wikimedia.org

Stock Photo – upload.wikimedia.org

The FTX hacker, who has been silent up until a few days ago, has moved their stolen fund for the first time. According to blockchain analytics service provider Lookonchain, the amount of funds moved reached a total of 22,500 Ethereum (ETH).

Lookonchain reported on X (formerly Twitter), “The FTX Accounts Drainer has transferred 22,500 ETH ($38 million) out in the past 2 days and currently has 163,235 ETH ($275 million) left.

Another blockchain analytics platform, Arkham, reported that the hacker known as 0x3e9 owns around $3.97 million worth of Tether (USDT), $1.7 million worth of DAI (DAI), $43,000 worth of Binance Coin (BNB), and $30,000 worth of USDC. The hacker’s wallet also held around $42,000 worth of Bitcoin (BTC) and $8500 worth of wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC).

All of the transactions were performed in private using complex privacy techniques involving Decentralized Finance (DeFi) applications, making it more difficult to know how the funds are utilized.

Arkham mentioned that the funds were moved using the privacy wallet RailGun (RAIL), which shields transactions to hide the exact use of funds, and then through the decentralized exchange protocol ThorChain (RUNE), which is a bridge that lets users swap tokens between distinct blockchains anonymously.

Transferred in multiple transactions at different times, an amount of 700 ETH was transferred through Thorchain, while 1200 ETH went to the hacker’s Railgun wallet. Other ETH units stay in an intermediary wallet, while another 12,500 ETH valued at approximately $21 million remains in the original wallet.

Theft history

The hacker known as 0x3e9’s theft history goes as far back as November 2022, when the hacker successfully stole $600 million worth of Ethereum from FTX after the cryptocurrency exchange filed for bankruptcy. The hacker has since stayed silent, with no movement from their address for almost a year.

0x3e9 soon became one of the richest Ethereum whales, with data from Etherscan showing that their wallet was the 35th largest in the world.

SBF’s impending trial

Although the identity of 0x3e9 was never revealed, the incident had drawn speculation that the hack was an inside job. Some suspect that Sam Bankman-Fried, FTX’s disgraced former chief executive officer, was the hacker all along. 0x3e9 also happened to move the stolen funds on the eve of Bankman-Fried’s trials, which are scheduled to start on October 3rd.

Bankman-Fried’s trial is expected to span six weeks, with jury selection on October 3rd, followed by initial court proceedings on October 4th. The ex-CEO faces a total of seven charges, including two substantive charges and five conspiracy charges. While he has pleaded not guilty to all charges, he faces a possible maximum prison sentence of 115 years if found guilty.

Coingape mentioned that the potential launch of an ETH-based Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) in the U.S., which lets investors invest in lots of securities all at once, could have been one of the reasons that triggered the decision to move the coins. If the suspicions regarding Bankman-Fried are true, the former CEO may be trying to clear his Ethereum accounts before his fate is decided in court.

Community concerns

Members of the crypto community are becoming increasingly concerned that the FTX hacker’s transactions could incite an increase in ETH’s prices as selling pressure goes up. Over the course of the past few days, ETH’s price kept increasing, with CryptoSlate data showing an increase of 2.5 percent to $1,722.31.

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