Jury begins deliberations in Sam Bankman-Fried's fraud trial

Quick Take

  • Jurors have begun deliberations on former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried’s seven criminal counts of fraud and conspiracy related to the collapse of his cryptocurrency exchange.
  • The jury could return a verdict at any moment, but if they don’t reach a verdict by 8:30 p.m. tonight in New York, deliberations will continue on Monday. 

The jury has begun deliberating in Sam Bankman-Fried's trial on seven counts of fraud and conspiracy related to his time at the helm of FTX and its sister trading firm Alameda Research.

The jury could return with a verdict at any time until around 8:30 p.m. tonight in New York, at which point the court will recess until next Monday when deliberations will continue. The twelve jurors must reach a unanimous verdict on each of the seven counts in order to return a verdict. 

Upon sending the jury to deliberate, judge Lewis Kaplan asked them to tell the court whether they'll need need dinner and transportation ordered for them in case the deliberation goes into the evening. About a half hour later, they came back and said they would, according to Inner City Press.

If found guilty on all charges, Bankman-Fried faces a maximum sentence of 115 years in prison for what prosecutors called "one of the biggest financial frauds in U.S. history." 

Closing arguments


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In its closing argument, the prosecution argued that Bankman-Fried knowingly conspired to defraud customers, lenders, and investors in FTX, while the defense argued that Bankman-Fried made mistakes but acted in good faith — a "complete defense" against all charges in this case.  

In another trial currently scheduled for March 2024, Bankman-Fried faces an additional five criminal charges including fraud on customers of FTX in connection with the purchase and sale of derivatives, securities fraud on investors in FTX, and three conspiracy charges: bank fraud, operating an unlicensed money transmitter business, and violating the bribery statute of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

(Updates with report from Inner City Press.)

Disclaimer: The former CEO and majority shareholder of The Block has disclosed a series of loans from former FTX and Alameda founder Sam Bankman-Fried.

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Authors

Zack Abrams is a writer and editor based in Brooklyn, New York. Before coming to The Block, he was the Head Writer at Coinage, a Web3 media outlet covering the biggest stories in Web3. The story he co-reported on Do Kwon won a 2022 Best in Business Journalism award from SABEW. Other projects included a deep dive into SBF's defense based on exclusive documents and unveiling the identity of the hacker behind one of 2023's biggest crypto hacks — so far. He can be reached via X @zackdabrams or email, [email protected].
Anna is a senior policy reporter and assistant editor at The Block. She has a background in political journalism and covered Russian civil society for a range of news outlets in Moscow, including the award-winning newspaper Novaya Gazeta. Before joining The Block, Anna spent the past five years investigating cryptocurrency policies and adoption around the world at CoinDesk. Anna owns bitcoin and a gift NFT of sentimental value.


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