After a five-week trial, a New York jury found FTX founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried guilty of all seven counts of fraud, conspiracy, and money laundering. The sentencing for the crime is yet to be ordered on a tentative date of March 28, 2024.
“The verdict unanimous, your honor.” a message from the 12-member jury noted as they reached the guilty verdict.
Once deemed as a ‘messiah’ of the crypto industry, Bankman-Fried has been found guilty of two counts of wire fraud, two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, each of which has a maximum sentence of 20 years. He was also convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit commodities fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, each of which has a maximum sentence of five years.
Together, he is looking at a maximum prison time of 115 years.
The courtroom sketch artist in the Sam Bankman Fried trial might be the most generous person alive pic.twitter.com/8l7Nn0zCN2
— Tom Breen (@TJBreen) October 30, 2023
“Sam Bankman-Fried perpetrated one of the biggest financial frauds in American history,” said US Attorney Damian Williams outside the court after the American jury revealed the guilty verdict. “This kind of fraud, this kind of corruption, is as old as time. We have no patience for it.”
JUST IN: 🇺🇸 US Attorney says Sam Bankman-Fried perpetrated one of the biggest financial crimes in US history. pic.twitter.com/CLzVhiALUg
— Watcher.Guru (@WatcherGuru) November 3, 2023
Signaling an appeal, the attorney of Bankman-Fried said: “We respect the jury’s decision. But we are very disappointed with the result. Mr. Bankman Fried maintains his innocence and will continue to vigorously fight the charges against him.”
Fall of a Crypto Moghul
Bankman-Fried was regarded as one of the prominent faces of the crypto industry when his now-bankrupt exchange, FTX, was at its peak. Another prized entity of his collapsed crypto empire was Alameda Research, which he founded before FTX. However, all that crumbled overnight when his shady business practices surfaced last year in November.
The prosecutors accused him of deliberately setting up to steal around $8 billion in customer funds, using them to buy real estate, make political contributions, and finance pet charitable projects.
While Bankman-Fried faced the criminal trial, his other top associates pled guilty to the charges against them and cooperated with the prosecutors in the…