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Bankman-Fried Expected to Plead Not Guilty in FTX Fraud Case

Sam Bankman-Fried is expected to plead not guilty to criminal charges related to his now-bankrupt FTX cryptocurrency exchange on Tuesday.

Sam Bankman-Fried
Sam Bankman-Fried

The charges include illegally using FTX customer deposits to support his hedge fund, Alameda Research, and to purchase real estate and make millions of dollars in political contributions. This alleged fraud, described by prosecutors as "epic," has resulted in two counts of wire fraud and six conspiracy counts brought against Bankman-Fried, including charges related to money laundering and campaign finance violations. If convicted, he could face up to 115 years in prison.

Bankman-Fried Released on $250 Million Bond, Subject to Electronic Monitoring

Following his extradition from the Bahamas last month, where he was living and where FTX was based, Bankman-Fried has been released on a $250 million bond. As part of his release, he is subject to electronic monitoring and must live with his parents, both professors at Stanford Law School in California. Bankman-Fried has admitted to making mistakes while running FTX but maintains that he is not criminally liable.

FTX CEO, CTO Plead Guilty in Fraud Case, Agree to Cooperate with Prosecutors

The prosecution's case against Bankman-Fried was strengthened last month when two of his closest associates, Caroline Ellison, CEO of Alameda Research, and Gary Wang, former CTO of FTX, pleaded guilty to a total of 11 criminal charges and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. Ellison and Wang were also sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission but have settled those civil cases. FTX's new CEO, John Ray, has stated that the exchange was run by "grossly inexperienced" and unsophisticated individuals.