The founder of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, was found guilty this Thursday by a New York jury of the seven crimes of fraud and money laundering with which he was charged. The 12-member jury (nine women and three men) delivered its verdict late in the afternoon, after a trial that lasted almost a month and in which the US Federal Prosecutor’s Office painted the 31-year-old defendant as a fraudster who stole money from thousands of victims. Bankman-Fried now faces a maximum sentence of more than one hundred years for the seven crimes, which include several counts of fraud and money laundering.
The accused sat as a witness during the last three days of the hearings, and took the opportunity to distance himself from the bad decisions at FTX and its sister company, Alameda Research; point out his former allies, who cooperate with the Prosecutor’s Office, and reiterate that he had no bad intentions, but acknowledged that he did not measure up and failed in risk management.
Deputy prosecutor Danielle Sassoon subjected Bankman-Fried to harsh questioning, pointing out contradictions between his private and public statements and obtaining his confession, for example, that FTX gave a large line of privileged credit to Alameda, which used the funds of the clients to “play,” as he stated in closing arguments.
FTX, which was one of the largest cryptocurrency platforms in the world and was once valued at $32 billion, collapsed in November 2022 after many users rushed to withdraw their funds amid reports that questioned the solvency of the company.
Bankman-Fried was accused of diverting nearly $9 billion from FTX clients for other purposes and faces another similar trial in March, in which he is accused of fraud by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). ).