CEO of the FTX Sam Bankman-Fried sentenced to 25 years in prison for fraud

Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for fraud and conspiracy. The sentence includes an $11 billion fine and the forfeiture of assets

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Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been sentenced to 25 years in prison by U.S. federal judge Lewis Kaplan for his involvement in a fraud and conspiracy scheme that led to the collapse of FTX. The judge criticized Bankman-Fried for his lack of remorse and characterized his attempts to portray himself as an altruistic individual to the public as nothing more than an act. In addition to his prison sentence, Bankman-Fried has been fined $11 billion and will have to sell off assets such as a private jet. The defense’s argument claiming that Bankman-Fried was not likely to commit future crimes was dismissed by the judge.

Bankman-Fried’s 25-year prison sentence follows his conviction on seven criminal counts in November, a year after FTX filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. He plans to appeal the conviction, which, according to his lawyer, cannot proceed until after Kaplan’s sentencing decision.

During the sentencing hearing, the judge heard comments from various individuals involved in the case, including prosecutors, Bankman-Fried’s attorney, a victim, a lawyer representing other FTX victims, and Bankman-Fried himself. U.S. Attorney Damian Williams stated that the sentence sends a powerful message that financial crimes will face swift and severe consequences. The judge also noted that Bankman-Fried’s reputation has suffered greatly, but acknowledged his persistence and marketing skills while justifying the lengthy sentence.

Bankman-Fried’s attorney, Mark Mukasey, argued that his client’s decisions were guided by mathematical considerations rather than malice.

In his statement, Bankman-Fried expressed concern for the FTX customers awaiting the return of their funds, emphasizing that he was more focused on their needs rather than his own emotional life or theoretical future children. He acknowledged that his useful life was likely over, having spent the last six months in the Metropolitan Detention Centre in Brooklyn. Bankman-Fried also claimed that there were sufficient assets for FTX’s creditors to be repaid in full, despite the self-induced “liquidity crisis” the company faced. He expressed regret for his role in FTX’s collapse and took responsibility for it, extending apologies to his former friends and government witnesses.