Sam Bankman-Fried sentencing: Faces 50 years, hopes for 5

  • Prosecutors seek a 40-50 year jail term for FTX creator Sam Bankman-Fried, while the defence is pushing for just five or six years.
  • Judge Lewis Kaplan, overseeing the month-long trial in November, is set to reveal the fate of Bankman-Fried, amid guilty verdicts on seven charges tied to FTX collapse and $10 billion customer deposit disappearance.
  • Bankman-Fried’s legal team advocates for a 63-78 month sentence, citing successful risk-taking and promising reimbursement plans for FTX customers, amidst insistence on the client’s “first-time, nonviolent offender” status.

Sam Bankman-Fried, the creator of FTX, will be sentenced Thursday, March 28, 2024, to up to 40 to 50 years in jail. The defence is asking the judge to accept a term that is around 90% less.

Judge to decide fate of Bankman-Fried

In Manhattan on Thursday morning, Judge Lewis Kaplan, overseeing the month-long trial in November, will reveal the fate of Bankman-Fried.

Found guilty of seven charges related to the collapse of crypto exchange FTX and the vanishing of roughly $10 billion in customer deposits, Bankman-Fried awaits his verdict.

Also read: Sam Bankman-Fried seeks 5 years, shares crypto advice with guards

Bankman-Fried’s legal team is hopeful that Judge Kaplan will consider the higher likelihood of FTX users reclaiming most, if not all, of their lost funds from the exchange’s 2022 bankruptcy.

In a recent update, attorneys representing FTX’s bankruptcy estate informed a Delaware judge of their commitment to reimbursing all consumers and creditors with valid claims.

Working with FTX’s new leadership team, lawyer Andrew Dietderich stated that while “there is still a greater amount of work and risk” involved in returning all of the money to clients, the team has a “strategy to achieve it”.

Also read: Sam Bankman-Fried replaces legal team ahead of sentencing

CEO John Ray III and team recover over $7B

For several months, the company’s recent CEO, John Ray III, along with his group of restructuring experts, has been recovering money, high-end real estate, cryptocurrency, and missing assets.

More than $7 billion has already been amassed by them, and this figure doesn’t include valuables like the $26 million in gifts and property given to Bankman-Fried’s parents or the $700 million allocated to K5 Global and its founder, Michael Kives. Kives utilised FTX funds to invest in businesses that have since appreciated in value, such as SpaceX.

Also read: Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX, avoids second trial as prosecutors opt for sentencing

FTX founder’s lawyers push for 63-78 month sentence

The legal team for Bankman-Fried has requested a sentence that falls between 63 and 78 months.

The lawyers representing the FTX founder predominantly emphasise the argument that Bankman-Fried’s bold risk-taking ultimately proved successful. They also contend that the bankruptcy estate intends to fully reimburse FTX customers, notwithstanding the fact that their client is a “first-time, nonviolent offender.”


Sylvia Shen

Sylvia Shen, a news reporter at BTW media dedicated in Fintech and Blockchain. She graduated from University of California, Davis. Send tips to

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