Shark Tank Star Kevin O’Leary defends Crypto Exchange FTX & Sam Bankman-Fried


Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary, aka Mr. Wonderful has defended his support for the collapsed crypto exchange FTX (and its former CEO Sam BankmanFried) (SBF). “This is America. He stressed that the justice system gives the presumption that one is innocent, unless proven otherwise. O’Leary also denied Changpeng Zhao (CZ), who claimed that he perjured himself at a U.S. Senate hearing about why FTX failed.
Kevin O’Leary discusses FTX’s Collapse
In an interview with CNBC Friday, Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary defended himself as a spokesperson of the collapsed crypto exchange FTX. He also spoke out about Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao’s (CZ), calling him a liar.
O’Leary responded to a question about why he didn’t condemn Sam Bankman-Fried (ex-FTX CEO):
This is America. Unless proven otherwise, the justice system gives the presumption that you are innocent.
The Bahamas arrested the former FTX executive last week. His crypto exchange was also under investigation by the U.S. government. O’Leary was FTX’s spokesperson when it crashed. He also invested in the exchange. To become its spokesperson, the company paid O’Leary $15 million. Shark Tank star claimed that the company lost it when it filed for bankruptcy.
When asked “Are your still combining money you received from FTX and losing it, or did some of your own money go into investing?” Shark Tank’s star said, “Money can be fungible.” Joe Kernen, CNBC’s anchor, then observed: “So you didn’t. Again, you are a venture investor who ventured under your name… You didn’t even pay taxes.
Andrew Ross Sorkin then asked O’Leary: “What do You Think Happened?” Do you believe that this was a fraud? He stressed that he didn’t “have all the facts” and that the new FTX CEO also doesn’t have them yet. Wonderful replied:
I am looking for my records. I am willing to pay for a forensic audit of the accounts. I would like to know the details. There are many bad things that have been said here. No question about it. Some of these are likely to be true, most likely because there isn’t any money. Somewhere, the cash is gone.

O’Leary Responds To Binance CEO CZ’s Allegation
O’Leary’s testimony to the Senate Banking Committee stating he believes FTX failed due to rival crypto exchange Binance deliberately putting it out of business, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao called the Shark Tank star a liar.
Mr. Wonderful stressed:
Yesterday, CZ called my a liar on the air. He suggested that I perjure myself in front the U.S. Senate for two hours this week. I can assure that this is not true.
O’Leary said, “Another little story you should understand.” O’Leary explained that his father was Irish and that he had been told by his father that he would never call an Irishman “a liar” unless he is certain that it is true. Shark Tank star then asked his dad: “Why is that dad?” His father replied, “Because the Irish have crazy.”
Referring to CZ’s accusation, Mr. Wonderful stated, “I’m unhappy about this,” adding:
At the end, I have no ill will toward this guy but he’s a part of the story.
O’Leary nearly secured $8 billion to save FTX from bankruptcy before it collapsed. He stated that Bankman-Fried is a top trader in the crypto space, and he will support the FTX cofounder again if he starts a new venture.
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