FTX claim value soars to 92%, creditor sued for reneging on $58M deal

Attestor Capital, a London-based investment firm holding significant FTX bankruptcy claims, has initiated legal action against a Panamanian company called Lemma Technologies.

The lawsuit stems from Lemma’s alleged retraction of an agreement to sell two FTX accounts, valued at $166 million at the time of FTX’s collapse, to Attestor. The agreement was formed in June 2023 after Attestor placed the highest bid in an auction organized by Lemma Technologies in May 2023.

Lemma Technologies, which acquired the accounts from its majority owner, South Korean national Junho Bang, in January 2023, agreed to sell the claims to Attestor for about $58 million. At the time, this sum represented nearly 35% of the accounts’ initial value.

However, Attestor alleges that Lemma began to express concerns over its authority to sell the claims and the potential liability Bang could face from his business associates if the transfer proceeded.

As delays ensued, Lemma Technologies is accused of attempting to renegotiate the purchase price, indicative of what Attestor describes as “seller’s remorse.” The suit highlights the rising value of FTX claims, with the average bid for claims increasing from 35% at the time of the agreement to 92% by the end of 2023. This came amid growing investor confidence in recovering funds through the bankruptcy process.

This lawsuit comes amid other legal troubles for Bang, who, along with two executives from Haru Invest, a South Korean crypto yield platform, was arrested in February on charges of embezzling nearly 1.1 trillion won ($830 million) in cryptocurrencies, from around 16,000 customers. Haru Invest has since suspended withdrawals and deposits and has taken legal action against B&S Holdings for allegedly providing fraudulent management reports.

Haru Invest acted as a cryptocurrency yield platform that has been facing troubles since it suspended withdrawals in June 2023.

According to the prosecution’s claims, the executives of Haru Invest misappropriated the coins deposited by their customers. This was purportedly done by reinvesting the assets from March 2020 to June 2023, contrary to the firm’s claims of using “risk-free diversified investment techniques” for operating a stable business.

Haru Invest had previously attributed its challenges to alleged fraudulent activities by consignment operator B&S Holdings, formerly known as Aventus. However, the arrests suggest deeper issues within Haru Invest’s operations.