Sam Bankman-Fried Built FTX on a ‘Pyramid of Deceit,’ Prosecutor Says

Sam Bankman Fried, the onetime cryptocurrency mogul, built his FTX crypto exchange on a “pyramid of deceit” and a “foundation of lies and false promises,” a federal prosecutor said in closing statements on Wednesday at the criminal fraud trial.

Over more than two hours in a Manhattan courtroom in the morning, Nicolas Roos, the prosecutor, used scathing language to paint Mr. Bankman-Fried as a liar and fraudster. The FTX founder, Mr. Roos said, was driven by greed and was responsible for the collapse of the exchange a year ago, which left customers unable to recover their deposits. And Mr. Bankman-Fried, who had testified during the trial in his own defense, had repeatedly dissembled and dodged questions, Mr. Roos said.

Mr. Bankman-Fried “lied about big things and small things,” the prosecutor said, pointing out that the defendant said he “couldn’t recall” more than 140 times in response to questions on cross-examination. “It was uncomfortable to hear,” Mr. Roos said.

The prosecutor’s closing statement came after 15 days of testimony in Mr. Bankman-Fried’s trial, which is one of the most high-profile financial crime cases in years. The outcome of the case will be seen as a referendum not only on the rapid rise and fall of Mr. Bankman-Fried’s business empire, which at its peak was valued at $32 billion, but also on the volatile crypto industry, which only two years ago was riding high before melting down last year.

We are having trouble retrieving the article content.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.

We are confirming your access to this article, this will take just a moment. However, if you are using Reader mode please log insubscribe, or exit Reader mode since we are unable to verify access in that state.

Confirming article access.

If you are a subscriber, please log in.