FTX founder Sam-Bankman-Fried convicted of defrauding cryptocurrency customers

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NEW YORK (AP) — A federal jury convicted FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried on Thursday of fraud charges accusing him of stealing about $10 billion from customers and investors in what a prosecutor says was one of the biggest frauds in U.S. history. The verdict came quickly after a Manhattan federal court jury began deliberating midway through the afternoon. Bankman-Fried, 31, could face decades in prison after prosecutors said he cheated thousands of customers of billions of dollars before the collapse of his companies in November, 2022. Prosecutors said he spent the money on investments, real estate, promotions for his cryptocurrency exchange and political contributions. He was extradited from the Bahamas to the United States in December. Originally freed on a $250 million personal recognizance bond to live with his parents in Palo Alto, California, he was jailed in August after Judge Lewis A. Kaplan concluded that he had tried to tamper with possible trial witnesses. The verdict came after a month-long trial in which three of his former fellow top executives pleaded guilty to fraud charges and testified against him. Bankman-Fried testified for three days, telling the jury he didn’t commit fraud. After his arrest last year, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said the fraud was one of the largest in U.S. history.

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