Former BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes has reportedly surrendered himself to U.S. authorities in Hawaii to face charges of failing to implement money laundering protections at the exchange. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the U.S. Department of Justice announced the charges in October 2020. Hayes appeared in a Honolulu court this week and was released on a US$10 million bond, Bloomberg reported. He faces further court proceedings in New York.
Arthur Hayes is accused of not implementing AML protections at BitMEX.
Arthur Haye’s legal team issued a statement saying, “Arthur Hayes is a self-made entrepreneur who has been wrongly accused of crimes that he did not commit. Mr. Hayes voluntarily appeared in court and looks forward to fighting these unwarranted charges.” Hayes, 35, is reportedly a Singapore resident and married to a Singapore citizen. Before founding BitMEX, he worked as an equities trader at Citigroup in Hong Kong. Later last year in October, Arthur Hayes and BitMEX CTO Samuel Reed, co-founder Ben Delo, and Head of Business Development Greg Dwyer resigned from their roles at BitMEX’s holding company 100x group.
“BitMEX knowingly allowed U.S. residents to trade on the platform.”
The U.S. charges, each of which carries a maximum five-year prison sentence, stem from accusations that Seychelles-registered BitMEX and its leadership knowingly allowed U.S. residents to open accounts and trade on the platform. Though the company had always declared itself unavailable to U.S. customers on its sign-up pages, it allegedly structured its operations to avoid compliance with U.S. regulations and had not implemented proper KYC procedures that would have identified U.S.-based users. The CFTC and DOJ announced charges after fierce Bitcoin critic Nouriel Roubini made claims in July 2019 that the crypto platform was involved in illegal activities.