September 7, 2023 at 15:42 GMTModified date: September 7, 2023 at 15:42 GMT
September 7, 2023 at 15:42 GMT

FTX exec Ryan Salame set to plead guilty: Bloomberg

Ryan Salame, a deputy of Sam Bankman-Fried, plans to plead guilty to criminal charges “according to people familiar with the case”, Bloomberg reports today.

FTX. Pic: Unsplash

Ryan Salame, a deputy of Sam Bankman-Fried at the now fallen FTX crypto exchange, plans to plead guilty to criminal charges “according to people familiar with the case”, Bloomberg reports today.

Salame, co-CEO of FTX Digital Markets, is alleged to have managed FTX’s political donations. It is believed he donated large sums to Republican candidates.

He is scheduled to appear in a Manhattan federal court on Thursday afternoon following negotiations with prosecutors. Salame will become the fourth exec to admit to criminal conduct among Bankman-Fried’s cohorts.

The plea comes a few weeks before SBF’s trial begins in New York on 2 October. Bankman-Fried has been behind bars since mid-August on seven different charges, including securities fraud, wire fraud, commodities fraud and money laundering.

Meanwhile, it was reported yesterday that SBF lost an initial appeal to return to being free on bail prior to his trial.

In a 6 September filing in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Clerk of the Court Catherine O’Hagan Wolfe said a circuit judge had denied a motion from SBF’s legal team seeking his immediate release from Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center. 

According to Wolfe: “The motion for pretrial release is referred to the next available three-judge panel. To the extent Appellant requests his immediate release pending decision by the three-judge panel, that request is denied.”

SBF’s FTX trial

SBF’s current prison has been the subject of concern for some time. It’s said to house more than 1,500 detainees in both cells and dormitory-style rooms. When Judge Lewis Kaplan revoked Bankman-Fried’s bail, he noted that the M.D.C. was not known for its top-tier facilities.

In February 2019, there was a power outage at the M.D.C. that lasted nearly a week, leaving detainees in cold conditions. 

Last year, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers stated that the M.D.C. had the highest number of Covid-19 positive detainees in the country during the pandemic.