Beleaguered cryptocurrency king and FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried was convicted on seven counts in his fraud trial in New York on Thursday, ending a storied ascent that brought in millions in political donations and sparked criminal probes across agencies when FTX collapsed.
The sentences for the combined counts carry possible prison time of as much as 110 years in prison.
Sentencing in the case is set for March 28.
Bankman-Fried, 31, faced several charges over allegations that he defrauded his customers and investors of billions of dollars in a scheme that prosecutors have called “one of the biggest financial frauds in American history.”
“[It was] a multibillion-dollar scheme designed to make him the King of Crypto – but while the cryptocurrency industry might be new and the players like Sam Bankman-Fried might be new, this kind of corruption is as old as time,” Damian Williams, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said in a statement.
“This case has always been about lying, cheating, and stealing, and we have no patience for it,” Williams continued.
The jury reportedly deliberated for just over four hours in the case after being ordered to stay after hours by the judge.
Sheila Warren, CEO of the Crypto Council for Innovation, told The Hill that Bankman-Fried’s case “was always about fraud, and this outcome confirms that the jury understood who and what was on trial here.”
“The jury heard evidence that Sam Bankman-Fried was out for himself, and that’s reflected in the verdict,” Warren said. “This case serves as a reminder that rules that have existed for a long time created a path to accountability for these crimes.”
Following the collapse of FTX cryptocurrency exchange last year, Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas last December and faced charges for wire fraud; conspiracy to commit wire fraud; securities fraud; money laundering; and conspiracy to make unlawful political contributions and defraud the Federal Election Commission.
The trial kicked off Oct. 2 in a Manhattan courthouse, with the jury hearing testimony from several members of his executive team, including his ex-girlfriend and former Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison.
Bankman-Fried took the stand starting last week, testifying in front of just the trial judge and lawyers Thursday, and the jury Friday.
Prosecutors began cross-examining Bankman-Fried in front of the jury Monday, bringing up his public statements before and after FTX filed for bankruptcy last year, when it could not process the billions in withdrawals, according to The Associated Press.
“My hope is that we can turn the focus to the victims here rather than continuing to give airtime to the latest person who committed one of the oldest crimes on the books: fraud,” Warren said.
Miranda Nazzaro contributed.