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Press Release

Statement Of U.S. Attorney Damian Williams On The Conviction Of Samuel Bankman-Fried

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

“Sam Bankman-Fried perpetrated one of the biggest financial frauds in American history – a multibillion-dollar scheme designed to make him the King of Crypto – but while the cryptocurrency industry might be new and the players like Sam Bankman-Fried might be new, this kind of corruption is as old as time.  This case has always been about lying, cheating, and stealing, and we have no patience for it.  

When I became U.S. Attorney, I promised we would be relentless in rooting out corruption in our financial markets.  This is what relentless looks like.  This case moved at lightning speed – that was not a coincidence, that was a choice.  This case is also a warning to every fraudster who thinks they’re untouchable, that their crimes are too complex for us to catch, that they are too powerful to prosecute, or that they are clever enough to talk their way out of it if caught.  Those folks should think again, and cut it out.  And if they don’t, I promise we’ll have enough handcuffs for all of them.

This verdict would not have been possible without the amazing work by the career prosecutors from my Office and the FBI agents who have given their all for this case.  We have pushed them hard, and they have delivered every step of the way.  They are the best of the best, and I am grateful for them.

This case has received a tremendous amount of attention, and I understand why that is, but the women and men of the Southern District of New York consistently deliver outstanding public service on behalf of the American people – without fear or favor and often without any public recognition.  They do it because they believe in the rule of law, because they love this country, and because they are patriots.   I am proud to serve with them.” 

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Bankman-Fried, 31, of Stanford, California, was convicted of two counts of wire fraud conspiracy, two counts of wire fraud, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.  He was also convicted of conspiracy to commit commodities fraud and conspiracy to commit securities fraud, each of which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

The statutory maximum sentences are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by a judge.


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated November 2, 2023

Securities, Commodities, & Investment Fraud
Press Release Number: 23-380