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Will Bankman-Fried Finally be Found Guilty as $1 Billion Charge Laid on Former CEO by FTX

Published July 21, 2023 10:42 AM
Omar Elorfaly
Published July 21, 2023 10:42 AM

Key Takeaways

  • Will Sam Bankman-Fried plead “not guilty” again?
  • SBF’s partners are likely to leave him hanging dry
  • Who is Sam Trabucco? What happened to the former Alameda CEO?

Sam Bankman-Fried is reportedly  being sued by the company he created, FTX. The cryptocurrency, now led by John Ray, is suing the founder in attempts to retrieve $1 billion dollars the company claims SBF misappropriated. 

SBF has, so far, pled “not guilty” to all charges against him. The new lawsuit also names former FTX executives – Caroline Ellison, Zixiao “Gary” Wang, and former FTX engineering director Nishad Singh – all of whom have pled “guilty” and agreed to cooperate with the US government.

Bankman-Fried Not Guilty?

SBF is currently under house arrest in his childhood home in Palo Alto, California, awaiting a trial for eight federal charges, including defrauding the US government, for which he pleaded “not guilty.” He’s also set to face extra charges filed by the US Department of Justice, including bribing a foreign official, for which he will be tried in 2024.

Bankman-Fried convinced the DOJ to postpone the trial for these charges after arguing that the government should not file extra charges during his extradition.

On the other end of things, Ellison, Wang, and Singh, FTX/Alameda’s former executives, have already pled guilty to the charges filed against them and agreed to cooperate with the US government on the matter of FTX’s collapse.

Most notably, a Google Document  written by Ellison, former Alameda CEO and SBF’s former romantic partner, in which she detailed many of her experiences with FTX, Alameda, and Bankman-Fried.

“I have been feeling pretty unhappy and overwhelmed with my job,” reads Ellison’s document in February 2022. “At the end of the day I can’t wait to go home and turn off my phone and have a drink and get away from it all.”

“It doesn’t really feel like there’s an end in sight,”

Ellison was hired by Bankman-Fried in 2017. However, four years later, SBF promoted her to a co-CEO position to run Alameda alongside Sam Trabucco.

Reports also show that Ellison was paid far less for her job, compared to her colleagues. Ellison was compensated a total of $6 million, while Singh made $587 million, Wang made $246 million, and of course, SBF made $2.2 billion.

Perhaps the lackluster compensation compared to her colleagues drove Ellison to turn on SBF, but the end of their romantic endeavor is likely a key factor. 

In April 2022, Ellison wrote “I felt pretty hurt/rejected,” adding “Not giving you the contact you wanted felt like the only way I could regain a sense of power.”

What Happened To Trabucco?

As her co-CEO, Sam Trabucco shared meetings, discussions, and decision-making with Ellison. Both Trabucco and Ellison took Alameda’s helm in October 2021. However, Trabucco lasted under a year, accordingly to court filings .

Trabucco stepped down from his CEO position in August of 2022, mere months before the whole company collapsed, although he had been friends with Bankman-Fried for over a decade.

According to reports , since stepping down, Trabucco reportedly bought two apartments in San Francisco for around $10 million. On top of that, he also purchased a 52-foot yacht.

Trabucco has perhaps taken the smartest decision out of all of his former colleagues, as his early departure from the company has resulted in him not being named on any of the charges filed against the company.

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