Feds Drop Campaign Finance Charge Against SBF
Federal prosecutors have dropped the campaign finance violation charge against FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, after The Bahamas told the United States that it never planned to extradite SBF on campaign finance violations – which the DOJ now says would violate ‘its treaty obligations to The Bahamas.’
“The Government has been informed that The Bahamas notified the United States earlier today that The Bahamas did not intend to extradite the defendant on the campaign contributions count,” US Attorney Damian Williams wrote in a Wednesday night letter filing to drop the charge. “Accordingly, in keeping with its treaty obligations to The Bahamas, the Government does not intend to proceed to trial on the campaign contributions count.”
The filing was made hours after Judge Lewis A. Kaplan placed a gag order on SBF after prosecutors accused him of leaking the personal writings of former girlfriend and business partner, Caroline Ellison.
Recall that SBF was charged with fraud and campaign finance violations following the collapse of his crypto exchange. He was extradited from the Bahamas to face trial in a US federal court, and has been out on a $250 million bond while awaiting trial. SBF was notably accused of making over 300 political contributions to the tune of tens of millions of dollars through straw donors and using corporate funds.
“Bankman-Fried’s use of straw donors allowed him to evade contribution limits on individual donations to candidates to whom he had already donated,” reads a superseding indictment.
New: superseding indictment charges Sam Bankman-Fried with 12 counts, includes new details about alleged campaign donation fraud.
SBF and cohort made more than 300 donations totaling tens of millions of dollars, feds allege —> pic.twitter.com/XM9niJAcBZ
— Ben Feuerherd (@benfeuerherd) February 23, 2023
SBF still faces seven charges in October relating to fraud, journalist Mario Nawfal notes.
These include defrauding customers and lenders of FTX. It is alleged that SBF siphoned billions of dollars that customers had deposited with FTX. Other charges may yet result in an additional trial, but complications arise from litigation in the Bahamas over the extradition, which must be concluded before the US government can proceed. If convicted on the securities fraud and wire fraud charges, SBF faces the prospect of being sentenced to dozens of years in prison.
🚨BREAKING: PROSECUTORS DROP CAMPAIGN FINANCE CHARGE AGAINST FTX’S SAM BANKMAN-FRIED
Federal prosecutors are dropping the charge that SBF violated campaign finance rules.
SBF was charged with fraud and campaign finance violations after the sudden collapse of FTX, a crypto… pic.twitter.com/YvMlRmjwr0
— Mario Nawfal (@MarioNawfal) July 27, 2023