After the collapse of Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX, customers suffered losses in the billions of dollars. Following a grueling trial in New York and four hours of deliberations, the jury’s verdict is out.
SBF was found guilty of all seven charges by a jury after approximately four hours of deliberation. The charges against him included two counts of wire fraud, two counts of wire fraud conspiracy, one count of securities fraud, one count of commodities fraud conspiracy, and one count of money laundering conspiracy.
The maximum sentences for Bankman-Fried’s offenses range from 5 to 20 years in prison (for each charge). In particular, wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, and money laundering conspiracy can result in a maximum sentence of 20 years.
He is scheduled to appear in court for sentencing on March 28, 2024, before New York District Judge Lewis Kaplan. While government prosecutors will make a recommendation for his sentence, the final decision rests with Judge Kaplan.
All Charges Sam Bankman-Fried Guilty Of
- Count one: Wire fraud on customers of FTX
- Count Two: Conspiracy to commit wire fraud on customers of FTX
- Count Six: Conspiracy to commit commodities fraud on customers of FTX
- Counts three and four: Wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud on lenders to Alameda Research
- Count Five: Conspiracy to commit securities fraud on investors in FTX
- Count Seven: Conspiracy to commit money laundering
Another Trial for Sam Bankman-Fried
The 31-year-old convicted fraudster of two Stanford legal scholars is expected to remain in a federal jail in Brooklyn until his sentencing. According to his lawyer, Mark Cohen,
“Bankman-Fried maintains his innocence and will continue to vigorously fight the charges against him.”
In the meantime, a different trial involving five additional charges, which had been separated from the current proceedings, is set for March. However, Judge Kaplan has requested that the prosecutors determine by February 1 whether this trial will go forward.
Fates of Caroline Ellison, Gary Wang, and Nishad Singh – Jail or Fine?
During the trial, Bankman-Fried’s close associates – Caroline Ellison, Gary Wang, and Nishad Singh – provided crucial testimonies. They revealed that Bankman-Fried had directed them to engage in fraudulent activities, facilitating the transfer of billions in FTX customer funds to Alameda, an affiliated hedge fund predominantly owned by Bankman-Fried.
Importantly, they had already confessed as part of cooperation agreements with prosecutors.
Typically, cooperating witnesses receive lighter sentences, particularly when aiding in the prosecution of a more significant offender.
While Bankman-Fried faces the prospect of a lengthy prison term, in contrast, Ellison, Wang, and Singh are likely to receive minimal or no prison sentences and instead face fines only.
Their sentences will likely be determined after Bankman-Fried’s, with prosecutors vouching for their cooperation in letters to the judge. While judges are not bound by these letters, they usually consider them to encourage other witnesses in different cases to come forward.