The former cryptocurrency tycoon Sam Bankman-Friedfrom the FTX platform, was found guilty by a New York jury of all the charges against him for Ffraud, embezzlement and criminal association.
The jury reached its decision after five weeks of trial, and Bankman-Fried He now faces up to 110 years in prison. The sentence will be announced on March 28, 2024.
The federal process that lasted more than a month was a tough test for Bankman-Fried after some of his closest associates testified that he was key in all the decisions that led to some $8 billion disappearing from the trading platform. from FTX.
Who Sam Bankman-Fried?
31 years old, Bankman-Fried was until the end of last year the wonder boy of the cryptocurrency industry with an estimated fortune of $26 billion, according to Fortune magazine, before the spectacular collapse of his empire.
In their closing arguments, prosecutors portrayed the defendant as an extremely intelligent man consumed by greed who knew what he was doing when FTX funds were secretly funneled into an investment fund under his control.
“Find him guilty,” U.S. Attorney Danielle Sassoon said earlier Thursday. “He was ambitious” and had “the arrogance to think she could get away with fraud,” she added.
The defense said their client had acted in “good faith” and was overwhelmed by circumstances and the financial ineptitude of his close associates who testified against him to obtain plea bargains.
The star witness at the trial was Bankman-Fried’s former colleague and occasional girlfriend, Caroline Ellison, who told the jury that They stole “about 14 billion” from customers of the FTX cryptocurrency platform before going bankrupt last year.
How was the Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX scam?
The money was used to prop up Alameda ResearchBankman-Fried’s personal hedge fund for which he had tapped Ellison as CEO.
In November 2022, the FTX cryptocurrency empire exploded with massive withdrawal requests from users who panicked upon learning that some FTX funds had been compromised in risky Alameda Research investments.
That money had been used to finance venture investment deals, political contributions, as well as expensive properties in the Bahamas.
They also went to pay tens of millions of dollars to celebrities, including Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchento show their support for FTX and to purchase the naming rights to the stadium from the Miami Heat.
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