Founder of collapsed FTX exchange learns sentence, could get up to 50 years


Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the failed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, will hear his sentence in a multibillion-dollar embezzlement case in a Manhattan court today. At most, he could spend the next 50 years behind bars. A jury already found Bankman-Fried guilty last November of embezzlement in what authorities have called one of the biggest frauds in American history. At this point, according to media reports, it is clear that Bankman-Fried, who is appealing the verdict, will go to prison. However, Judge Lewis Kaplan will decide for how long.

Avoiding responsibility

The prosecution is proposing 40 to 50 years in prison, arguing that Bankman-Fried evaded responsibility after the FTX collapse and his arrest, blamed developments in the financial markets and others, tried to influence witnesses and repeatedly lied under oath.

But lawyers for Bankman-Fried, 32, call such a long sentence “medieval” and say it would effectively mean life in prison. They say Bankman-Fried should be sentenced to a maximum of six and a half years in prison, as he is a first-time offender and for non-violent activity. FTX clients will get almost all of their money back, according to the lawyers.


A jury found Bankman-Fried guilty in November after a month-long trial. It said before his companies collapsed in November 2022, Bankman-Fried defrauded thousands of customers out of billions of dollars he used for investments, real estate, promoting his stock market and contributions to politicians.

FTX was the second largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world before its collapse in November 2022 and was a gateway to the digital asset market for millions of people. Bankman-Fried has admitted that he erred in his management and that he was unable to prevent FTX’s collapse. But he denied that he intended to defraud anyone.

Source: Czech Press Office


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