Former FTX Executive Under Investigation for Potential Campaign Finance Violations

Ryan Salame, the former co-CEO of FTX Digital Markets, is reportedly under investigation by U.S. authorities for potential violations of campaign finance law. Salame, along with his girlfriend Michelle Bond, who ran as a Republican candidate for New York’s 1st congressional district in 2022, are at the center of this investigation.

The authorities are specifically scrutinizing the financial ties between Salame and Bond in relation to Bond’s 2022 congressional campaign. This information comes from a recent report by The New York Times. It’s important to note that this investigation is separate from the federal charges that other individuals linked to FTX and its subsidiaries have faced since the exchange filed for bankruptcy in November 2022.

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) has set limits on individual campaign contributions. For the 2022 election cycle, individuals could donate up to $2,900 to a primary campaign for a federal office candidate, and an additional $2,900 for the general election. FEC records show that Salame made two donations of $2,900 each to support Bond’s primary campaign in Massachusetts, and two more donations of $2,900 each for the general election.

In addition to Salame’s contributions, Bond herself made significant financial contributions to her campaign. She personally contributed over $145,000 and loaned her campaign more than $877,000.

In April, Salame’s residence was reportedly searched by officials from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. However, as of now, no charges have been filed against Salame in relation to his tenure at FTX Digital Markets. Salame served as co-CEO of the exchange’s Bahamian arm starting in December 2021.

Interestingly, Salame was the individual who first reported FTX to Bahamian authorities over concerns about the exchange sending user funds to Alameda Research. The potential role he may play in the upcoming criminal trials of Sam Bankman-Fried, former FTX CEO, scheduled to begin in October 2023 and March 2024, remains to be seen.


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FTX US and Alameda Research File Complaint Against FTX Digital Markets

In March 2023, legal teams representing FTX US and Alameda Research filed a complaint against FTX Digital Markets, a Bahamas-based company, alleging that it was a fraudulent enterprise used to obscure the question of the firm’s ownership. The complaint was filed with the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware, where FTX debtors stated that FTX Digital Markets, also known as FTX DM, and the joint provisional liquidators had claimed that the Bahamian arm was the “constructive owner” of’s fiat and crypto assets, as well as other intellectual property.

The legal teams claim that these claims made by FTX DM are baseless and will harm customers and all other creditors of the FTX Debtors as the company continues with bankruptcy proceedings in the United States. The filing states that the JPLs’ claim to ownership of’s property is based mainly on constructive, equitable, and other non-documentary arguments that depend upon the false premise that FTX DM was the center of the FTX Group. The filing further states that FTX DM was only a short-lived provider of limited “match-making” services for customer-to-customer transactions on the cryptocurrency exchange built, owned, and operated by Debtor FTX Trading, its immediate corporate parent.

The complaint filed by FTX US and Alameda Research asserts that FTX DM was a shell entity used to conceal the issue of the firm’s ownership, and its claims to ownership of’s property are unfounded. The legal teams claim that FTX DM was not the center of the FTX Group, as the company only provided limited match-making services for customer-to-customer transactions. The filing also asserts that FTX DM’s claims to ownership will harm customers and all other creditors of the FTX Debtors as the company continues with bankruptcy proceedings in the United States.

The legal battle between FTX US, Alameda Research, and FTX Digital Markets is ongoing, and it remains to be seen how the bankruptcy court will rule in this case. However, the complaint filed by FTX US and Alameda Research raises serious questions about the ownership of’s assets and the claims made by FTX DM. It is likely that this case will have significant implications for the cryptocurrency industry, as it highlights the importance of transparency and accountability in the sector.


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