Former FTX Digital Markets Co-CEO Pleads Guilty and Released on Bond

Picture Source: BeInCrypto

Ryan Salame, the former co-CEO of FTX Digital Markets, made headlines recently when he reportedly pleaded guilty to campaign finance law violations and operating FTX as an “unlicensed money transmitting business.” Following his court appearance on September 7, Salame was released on a $1 million bond with the support of two co-signers.

In a surprising turn of events, Judge Kaplan imposed significant financial penalties on Salame as part of his release conditions. He ordered Salame to pay $6 million to the US by the time of his sentencing and instructed him to forfeit two properties in Lenox, Massachusetts, and a Porsche automobile.

Salame’s guilty plea could potentially lead to a lengthy prison sentence. Judge Kaplan explained that both charges carry a maximum prison term of five years, and these sentences must be served consecutively. Additionally, Salame waived his right to appeal any sentence shorter than 10 years as part of the plea agreement.

The case against Salame is part of a broader legal battle involving FTX executives. Notably, it marks the fourth instance in which a senior FTX executive has entered a guilty plea. This trend began with Caroline Ellison, the former girlfriend of Sam Bankman-Fried (FTX’s founder), who pleaded guilty in December 2022. She pledged to cooperate fully with the investigation into FTX being conducted by the Southern District of New York.

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Gary Wang, FTX’s former co-founder, also confessed to various criminal charges, while Nishad Singh, the former engineering director, entered guilty pleas to six fraud charges in February.

Meanwhile, Sam Bankman-Fried himself remains in jail and maintains his innocence amidst the ongoing legal developments. The situation continues to attract significant attention and raises questions about the future of FTX and the cryptocurrency industry’s regulatory landscape.

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