Sentenced to 25 years in prison and confiscated more than $11 billion in assets, SBF’s “trial of the century” finally came to an end

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Author: Nancy, PANews

More than 15 months after his arrest, FTX founder SBF (Sam Bankman-Fried) was formally sentenced. He was eventually sentenced to a total of 25 years in prison in New York for multi-billion dollar fraud and ordered to confiscate more than 11 billion US dollars in assets. The judge recommended Place SBF to serve his sentence in a prison close to his family's home in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Sentenced to 25 years in prison and confiscated more than $11 billion in assets, SBF’s “trial of the century” finally came to an end

He committed perjury three times and was accused of having "no regrets"

In today’s final trial, many FTX victims appeared in court to accuse FTX. They said that FTX had been claiming on the Internet that it had fully compensated the victims, but this was not the case. The FTX bankruptcy estate party assumed or mischaracterized the victims as unsecured creditors, but the victims should have property rights. At least three people committed suicide because of this FTX fraud. FTX's bankruptcy law firm S&C was also accused by FTX creditors during the trial of "trampling on their property rights" by selling Solana assets at a 70% discount.

SBF's lawyer said in this regard that SBF is a clumsy nerd who is passionate about vegetarianism and a billionaire who does not care about material wealth. In middle school, he thought about his moral obligations to people around the world and donated his income while working on Wall Street. Gave to charity. SBF never spends money recklessly and persists until the last moment (in the FTX incident). He is not a ruthless financial serial killer who is predatory, has no desire to personally cause pain to anyone in any way, and has never set out to become the King of Crypto, but rather to have the greatest positive impact on the world. He makes decisions with mathematical thinking in his head rather than with malice in his heart.

SBF himself admitted that its decisions led to the collapse of FTX and Alameda Research, and apologized for this. He mentioned that although Alameda was in danger of collapse and FTX was not bankrupt, both companies had to liquidate in response to the run crisis on FTX due to excessive leverage operations, which ultimately led to the closure of FTX. But he also emphasized that the decision was not motivated by selfishness, but was a crisis caused by a series of wrong decisions and other factors. Although there are sufficient assets to repay customers, he also regrets that customers have not been repaid so far due to the liquidity crisis.

In this trial, Judge Kaplan rejected SBF’s claim that all investors had been repaid in full, saying that he found that SBF tried to tamper with witnesses and provided three perjury during the trial, including not discovering that Alameda had embezzled FTX customers until the fall of 2022. He lied that he first learned of the $8 billion deficit in October 2022.

After hearing a series of testimonies, Judge Kaplan ultimately concluded that the defendant (SBF) had a superior upbringing, with loving and engaged parents, earned a large amount of wealth on Jane Street after graduating from MIT, and made extensive donations. Despite being autistic, the defendant displayed exceptional intelligence and achievement but displayed unusual social clumsiness. At the same time, the defendant showed unusual ambition and talked about establishing two major companies and his strong interest in politics, intending to use his wealth to influence the political situation. He has also set up anonymous donation channels to support right-wing groups while claiming to support proper regulation of the crypto industry. But it's all just a show. The defendant admitted in an interview that his remarks on regulation were merely a public relations ploy and that he held a disdainful attitude towards regulators. "SBF clearly has no remorse and in almost 30 years of doing this, I have never seen a performance like this," Kaplan said.

It took more than a year, and the SBF trial was extremely tumultuous.

In December 2022, with the arrest of SBF in the Bahamas and witnesses from all parties testifying in court, the truth about the FTX collapse emerged. The U.S. Department of Justice once described SBF’s entire encryption empire as “a foundation built on lies.” House of Cards.”

However, SBF's conviction and sentencing have been a long-running battle.

After the collapse of FTX, SBF developed various methods to evade charges. In a secret memo, SBF planned to support Tucker Carlson, a former Forbes reporter who criticized the Democratic Party, to change his political stance to launch a redemption narrative. SBF had previously been "loyal" to the Democratic Party and his mother was a major fundraiser for the Democratic Party. At the same time, he also laid out multiple plans to escape responsibility in the memo, including blaming the collapse of FTX on his lawyers, his ex-girlfriend and the bankruptcy team that oversaw his bankrupt company:, and listed with the author Michael Lewis. on ABC and a debate with Bloomberg columnist Matt Levine to show that he is a good guy after all.

Judging from the subsequent defense, SBF has indeed been trying to clear up the blame. SBF even claimed that he suffered from depression and ADHD, which would affect his ability to defend. After being rejected for claiming innocence, SBF began to prepare a large amount of testimony to defend itself. According to its lawyer, the testimony lasted for four hours. In the testimony, SBF not only claimed to be unaware of the fraud accusation, but also lied that " Amnesia ”.

However, SBF's defense was not bought. The U.S. Department of Justice not only requested that all expert witnesses proposed by SBF be prohibited from testifying, but the U.S. prosecutors stated in the closing arguments of the SBF trial that "this is fraud, plain and simple theft."

Subsequently, SBF was convicted of seven charges and could face up to 115 years in prison. The final sentencing is scheduled for March 28 this year. The market has repeatedly made predictions about SBF's sentencing. For example, a former U.S. Department of Justice prosecutor predicted that SBF will spend 20 to 25 years in prison. The U.S. federal prosecutor called for SBF to be sentenced to 40 to 50 years for fraud. years in prison.

In response, the SBF said that US prosecutors' proposal to sentence him to up to 50 years in prison "distorts reality" and paints him as a "depraved supervillain". At the end of February this year, SBF changed lawyers before sentencing negotiations, and the lawyer subsequently asked for a reduced sentence to only 63 to 78 months in prison, saying that he faced the risk of "harm and extortion" in prison.

It is worth mentioning that in addition to being put on trial this week, the U.S. Department of Justice also submitted dozens of victim impact statements from FTX creditors. In their letters, they described their holdings in FTX and the impact of FTX’s bankruptcy on their lives. In the latest trial, letters from many victims were released, which may affect SBF’s sentencing to a certain extent.

After being blackmailed by inmates and sharing investment advice with prison guards, SBF’s parents were also prosecuted

During the sentencing, although SBF was released on bail with a bail of up to 250 million US dollars, he was detained at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York after his bail was revoked in August last year for trying to interfere with a witness, and his multiple applications for bail were rejected. reject.

SBF's own life in prison seems to be unsatisfactory. Crypto KOL Tiffany Fong once exposed SBF’s first photo on social media during pre-trial detention. She looked completely different from her previous photos, looking thin and thin. According to a previous post by Coindesk, SBF’s detention environment is overcrowded, and they only survive on bread and water, sometimes peanut butter, and the rooms in the dormitories and prisons are semi-dark.

Sentenced to 25 years in prison and confiscated more than $11 billion in assets, SBF’s “trial of the century” finally came to an end

In addition to the poor prison conditions, SBF was also revealed to be a target for blackmail due to his timid nature and "80-year-old physique." SBF's inmates noted that SBF was the least threatening person... More frequently the target of bullying, harassment, and assault relative to the general population of inmates, the extensive media coverage of SBF's case and his former net worth led to multiple blackmail attempts. Clinical psychiatrist Hassan Minhas said he believed SBF met the diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum disorder, which meant he was likely to "face a range of additional challenges" in prison and would therefore "require access to ongoing treatment and supervision". In addition, in addition to handling related cases in prison, SBF also shared suggestions on the encryption market with prison guards, and once recommended investing in Solana .

Interestingly, in February this year, former NYPD officer Carmine Simpson, who was imprisoned with SBF, wrote to a U.S. judge asking for leniency, saying, “Although 12 out of every 14 meals Sam eats every week, His meal consists of uncooked rice, a spoonful of disgusting-looking beans and week-old lettuce, but he has always kept his promise not to cruelty to animals. When SBF first told him that he had worked so hard to become a successful and When a wealthy man's main reason is to donate all his money to noble causes and people in need, frankly I thought he was lying to me. But I soon came to the conclusion that Sam was the lucky one I had The most selfless person I've ever met. The world would be a much better place if SBF was released from prison."

In addition to SBF, his father Joseph Bankman and mother Barbara Fried were also sued by FTX creditors, accusing their parents of embezzling millions of dollars through their involvement in the exchange business. According to previous court documents, SBF gave his parents US$10 million in funds and a property in the Bahamas worth US$16.4 million, with funds provided by FTX Trading. In response, SBF’s parents are seeking to have the lawsuit filed against them by FTX dismissed, denying allegations that they were aware of problems with the crypto trading platform and knowingly benefited from the company’s misconduct.

Although SBF’s trial of the century has finally come to an end, the loss of billions of user funds and the huge blow to the reputation of the encryption industry cannot be summed up in one fell swoop. It is a profound lesson for investors and practitioners, and a huge lesson. Be alert.

Disclaimer: The content above is only the author's opinion which does not represent any position of Followin, and is not intended as, and shall not be understood or construed as, investment advice from Followin.
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