Bankman-Fried convicted, but crypto policy debate is far from settled

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When Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX empire imploded a year ago it seemed likely to mark the death knell for the cryptocurrency sector. Since then, however, crypto’s flagship, Bitcoin, has more than doubled in value. Bitcoin, while way off its all-time high of almost $US70,000, has bounced back from its post-FTX lows around $US16,000 to trade around $US35,000 and the total crypto market is still worth about $US1.35 trillion even though a lot of the hot, get-rich-quick, speculative money has shifted towards trading in the artificial intelligence sector. That’s despite the disturbing insights into the sector provided by the trial of Bankman-Fried (known as SBF) that ended with his conviction late last week. Almost a year to the date that FTX and Bankman-Fried’s privately owned hedge fund, Alameda Research, were placed into voluntary bankruptcy, he was convicted of seven counts of wire fraud and conspiracy to launder money, with potential combined jail sentences of more than a century.

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