Daily Management Review

For Which Offences Was Sam Bankman-Fried Found Guilty?


For Which Offences Was Sam Bankman-Fried Found Guilty?
Earlier this week Sam Bankman-Fried was found guilty of fraud and conspiracy in connection with the demise of FTX, the defunct cryptocurrency exchange he founded and oversaw.
The former billionaire, 31, has entered a not guilty plea. An explanation of the seven counts, all of which resulted in his conviction, is provided below.
Theft of Customer Money
Bankman-Fried was accused by the prosecution of embezzling client funds to cover losses at his cryptocurrency hedge fund, Alameda Research, as well as for investing, purchasing property in the Bahamas, and contributing to US political campaigns.
Due to the theft of the monies, he was charged with one crime of wire fraud, two counts of conspiracy to commit fraud, and one count of conspiracy to launder money.
Lying To Investors And Lenders
Prosecutors charged Bankman-Fried with concealing from the exchange's auditors the fact that Alameda had borrowed substantial sums of money from FTX and using the erroneous financial statements that emerged as a result to comfort investors about his company's risk management.
Additionally, Bankman-Fried was charged with ordering former Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison to misrepresent to the fund's creditors the amount of money it had borrowed from FTX in an effort to persuade them not to call in their loans. Ellison entered a guilty plea and provided prosecution testimony during the trial.
In relation to the purported lies made to lenders and investors, Bankman-Fried was charged with two charges of conspiracy and one count of wire fraud.
What Was Bankman-Fried's Defense?
In his own defence testimony, Bankman-Fried maintained he never planned to steal money or commit fraud, even though he acknowledged making mistakes that harmed FTX workers and customers (such as failing to establish a risk management team).
His attorneys contended that Alameda had the right to take out loans from FTX users and that Bankman-Fried was unaware until the very end of the extent of the trading firm's debts to the exchange.
What Concern The Other Allegations?
Originally, Bankman-Fried was facing up to thirteen counts; however, five counts—including bank fraud and international bribery conspiracy—were added after he was extradited from the Bahamas and will be tried separately in March 2024.