Ex FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried Unlikely to Face Second Trial, U.S. Prosecutors Say

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Key Takeaways

  • Prosecutors reportedly emphasized the “strong public interest” in promptly resolving the case 
  • Prosecutors argue that most of the evidence has already been revealed during the first trial

Former CEO of the now-defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, may not face a second trial, according to U.S. prosecutors. The decision follows Bankman-Fried’s recent conviction on seven charges related to the collapse of FTX, including wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering.

As per media reports, prosecutors have emphasized the “strong public interest” in promptly resolving the case against the 31-year-old former billionaire. This decision is driven by the anticipation of victims, who are eagerly awaiting details about compensation for their FTX accounts following the exchange’s collapse in November 2022.

The prosecutors argued that the public interest “weighs particularly heavy here,” especially as most of the evidence has already been revealed during the first trial, leaving little room for significant new evidence.

On November 3, Bankman-Fried was found guilty on all seven fraud charges after a jury deliberated for four hours in his criminal trial. The charges 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.

Judge Lewis Kaplan maintained the sentencing schedule, setting Bankman-Fried’s sentencing date for March 28, 2024. Notably, Bankman-Fried’s request for a four to six-week adjournment on his sentencing hearing was declined.

Facing seven counts of federal fraud and conspiracy related to the collapse of FTX and its sister trading house, Alameda Research, Bankman-Fried could potentially face a life sentence if convicted. The trial, which commenced in early October and is concluding in the coming days, witnessed conflicting testimonies from Bankman-Fried’s former close friends and top lieutenants against the sworn statements of their former boss.

Prosecutors highlighted the significance of the impending sentencing on March 28, 2024, which is expected to include orders of forfeiture and restitution for the victims of Bankman-Fried’s crimes. The conviction stems from accusations of looting $8 billion from FTX customers out of sheer greed.

Bankman-Fried’s legal battles have extended beyond the criminal charges, with six additional charges, including campaign finance violations, conspiracy to commit bribery, and conspiracy to operate an unlicensed money transmitting business. Extradited from the Bahamas, where FTX was based, Bankman-Fried has been navigating a complex legal landscape since the collapse of FTX and Alameda Research nearly a year ago.

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Saniya Raahath
Saniya Raahath

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