Sam Bankman-Fried Refuse to File For Post-trial Motion

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According to the legal team of Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX will not be filing a post-trial motion after he was found guilty of seven of the charges levied against him. The young entrepreneur could get up to 115 years of jail time owing to the nature and severity of his crimes.

Sam Bankman-Fried Reserve Right To Pursue Appeal

Judge Lewis Kaplan in United States District Court for the Southern District of New York was informed of the decision through a letter which was sent to him on Friday. The letter stated that while Bankman-Fried’s lawyers have decided not to pursue any post-trial motion, they still reserve their right to file claims on appeal. This move marks a significant pivot in SBF’s criminal trial. 

Generally, Bankman-Fried’s trial has shown the U.S. authorities’ increased scrutiny of top players in the crypto industry. 

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Verdict From SBF’s Criminal Trial 

Bankman-Fried’s trial started in October, with many witnesses taking the stand including his ex-lover Caroline Ellison. A jury which consisted of 12 jurors and six alternates was selected to ultimately determine Bankman-Fried’s fate. Former FTX director Nishad Singh, FTX co-founder Gary Wang and his roommate at MIT Adam Yedidia also took the witness stand on the case

In the end, SBF was found guilty of seven charges about a month ago. Precisely, he was guilty of two counts of wire fraud, two counts of wire fraud conspiracy, one count of securities fraud, one count of commodities fraud conspiracy, and one count of money laundering conspiracy. 

Will SBF’s Second Trial Hold?

His sentencing hearing is scheduled to be held on March 28th, 2024. It is not yet certain what Judge Kaplan’s final verdict will be but five other counts are supposed to be considered during the second hearing based on how the twelve charges were split. At the same time, the necessity of these charges for the March proceeding is being questioned seeing that SBF already has a guilty verdict. 

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The latest decision not to file a post-trial motion also raises some uncertainties about the potential of having a second trial in March. In the meantime, Bankman-Fried is still at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center, where he was asked to stay pending his sentencing.

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