FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried found guilty of fraud

Samuel Benjamin Bankman-Fried, also known as SBF, born on March 6, 1992, is an American who has been convicted of fraud and was previously a cryptocurrency entrepreneur. He was the founder and CEO of FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange, and Alameda Research, a trading firm. Both entities went through a notable downfall, leading to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy in late 2022. Before the collapse of FTX, Forbes 400 listed Bankman-Fried as the 41st wealthiest American, and The World’s Billionaires ranked him as the 60th wealthiest individual globally. His net worth reached a high of $26 billion. However, by November 11, 2022, in the wake of FTX’s bankruptcy, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index estimated his net worth to have plummeted to zero.

Sam Bankman-Fried

Sam Bankman-Fried has been convicted on all seven charges related to fraud and money laundering. A jury in New York found him guilty of a scheme that defrauded customers and investors of a minimum of $10 billion, as reported by AP. The jury dismissed Bankman-Fried’s defense that he had no intention of defrauding customers prior to FTX’s bankruptcy a year ago. Assistant U.S. Attorney Danielle Sassoon, addressing the jury, stated that Bankman-Fried’s crimes had finally caught up with him and had been revealed. She accused him of using his customers’ accounts as his “personal piggy bank,” leading to the disappearance of up to $14 billion.

Upon the announcement of his sentencing scheduled for March 28, Bankman-Fried’s parents moved to the front row in a show of support. His father comforted his mother as their son was led out of the courtroom. Before leaving, Bankman-Fried exchanged a nod with his mother, who was visibly moved and wiped her face after his departure.

Speaking to the media after the verdict, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams characterized Bankman-Fried’s actions as one of the most significant financial frauds in U.S. history, a scheme worth billions intended to establish him as a leading figure in the crypto world. Williams was quoted saying, “While the cryptocurrency industry and players like Sam Bankman-Fried may be new, this type of fraud and corruption has a long history, and we will not tolerate it.” Mark Cohen, Bankman-Fried’s lawyer, expressed respect for the jury’s verdict but disappointment with the outcome. Cohen stated, “Mr. Bankman Fried continues to assert his innocence and will persist in his vigorous defense against the charges.”