FTX founder's billion-dollar betrayal lands him 25-year prison stint

Sam Bankman-Fried, once crypto's golden boy, sentenced for $8bn fraud against FTX customers.

FTX founder's billion-dollar betrayal lands him 25-year prison stint
Sam Bankman-Fried Jailed for 25 Years

The fallen 'crypto king' Sam Bankman-Fried was handed a 25-year prison sentence on Thursday, cementing his dramatic downfall from billionaire entrepreneur to convicted fraudster.

The 32-year-old founder of the now-defunct FTX cryptocurrency exchange stood accused of orchestrating an $8 billion swindle, plundering customer funds to cover losses at his hedge fund Alameda Research.

US District Judge Lewis Kaplan delivered the verdict in a Manhattan courtroom, rejecting Bankman-Fried's implausible claim that FTX clients hadn't genuinely lost money. Kaplan lambasted the defendant for perjuring himself on the stand, accusing him of regretting only his chances of evading justice. "He knew it was wrong. He knew it was criminal," the judge declared.

Despite Bankman-Fried's half-hearted apology acknowledging customer suffering, Kaplan made clear the vast scale of losses – $8 billion pilfered from FTX users, $1.7 billion sunk by equity investors, and $1.3 billion drained from Alameda's lenders. Prosecutors had sought a 40-50 year term for one of America's biggest-ever financial crimes.

The sentencing draws the curtain on Bankman-Fried's dramatic downfall from crypto wonderkid and political megadonor to the highest-profile target of a cryptocurrency crackdown. Though vowing to appeal, his swindling of consumer funds has cemented FTX's implosion as a landmark crisis eroding trust in digital assets.

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