Sam Bankman-Fried appeals fraud conviction, 25-year jail term


Bankman-Fried stands before Kaplan as he is sentenced to 25 years in prison, at Federal Court in New York City, US, March 28, 2024 in this courtroom sketch. News of the appeal comes two weeks after Kaplan set the prison term and ordered Bankman-Fried, known as ‘SBF’, to pay US$11bil (RM52.44bil) in forfeiture. — Reuters

NEW YORK: Fallen cryptocurrency wunderkind Sam Bankman-Fried has appealed his federal conviction and 25-year jail sentence in a sweeping fraud case, according to a legal filing made public April 11.

News of the appeal comes two weeks after US District Court Judge Lewis Kaplan set the prison term and ordered Bankman-Fried, known as “SBF”, to pay US$11bil (RM52.44bil) in forfeiture.

Bankman-Fried had soared to the top of the crypto world, becoming a billionaire before age 30 and turning FTX, a small startup he cofounded in 2019, into the world’s second largest exchange platform.

But in November 2022, Bankman-Fried’s breakneck rise came crashing down, with a deluge of customer withdrawals and revelations that billions of dollars had been illegally moved from FTX to Bankman-Fried’s personal hedge fund, Alameda Research.

He was convicted by a federal jury in New York in November 2023 on seven counts of fraud, embezzlement and criminal conspiracy.

During last month’s sentencing hearing, Bankman-Fried expressed regret about the firm’s demise, which also affected many colleagues.

“It haunts me every day,” he said. “I made a series of bad decisions.”

But the judge said Bankman-Fried had not fully accepted responsibility.

Bankman-Fried said “mistakes were made, but never a word of remorse for the commission of a terrible crime”, said Kaplan, who characterised the violations as “brazen” and called out SBF for his “exceptional flexibility” towards the truth. – AFP

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