Former FTX Exec to Plead the Fifth: Details

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In accordance with recent reports, Ryan Salame, one of the other CEOs of the now-bankrupt FTX Derivatives Exchange, would likely skip testifying regarding his involvement in the crypto exchange’s accused illicit campaign donation scheme if he were to be summoned in the ex-CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried’s criminal investigation.

Former FTX Exec Won’t Testify

In accordance with a statement made on August 14 by US federal investigators, Salame won’t be available to testify in the proceeding, in line with the attorneys for the former FTX co-CEO.

The report states: “Salame’s attorney has represented that if subpoenaed, Salame would invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.”

Salame is also Facing Charges

Notably, Salame is apparently facing his own personal assertions of campaign financing violations and is looking into a plea agreement with federal authorities.

He also benefited significantly from loans and payments made to a number of FTX’s top executives via the now-bankrupt firm’s trading arm Alameda Research. 

FTX Made Significant Donations to Politicians

According to the website Open Secrets, the former FTX head gave a total of over $24 million to Republican politicians.  

Moreover, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation looked into Salame’s home in April as he has been a close business colleague of Bankman-Fried, who is currently in prison and faces charges related to multiple frauds in his impending trial in October.

Salame Responsible for Driving SBF into Problems

A court filing on December 14th revealed that Salame was the person responsible for driving SBF into the problems. Based on the submitted record, co-CEO Salame informed Bahamian regulators that there may have been an illegal movement of customer money from FTX to Alameda Research, FTX’s sibling trading firm.

In addition, he advised the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that just three executives were qualified for authorization of these kinds of transactions. The three individuals named were disgraced CEO Bankman-Fried, cryptocurrency billionaire and FTX co-founder Zixiao “Gary” Wang, and Nishad Singh, director of engineering.

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