founder of FTX Sam Bankman-Fried has denied defrauding defrauded investors and robbing customers of deposits from cryptocurrency trading platforms.
Bankman-Fried, 30, is accused of running a “series of related fraudulent schemes” to divert customers’ money from FTX to buy luxury properties, donate “dirty” money to politiciansand making risky trades at the Alameda Research hedge fund.
He appeared in Manhattan federal court on Tuesday to enter a preliminary plea. Speaking on his behalf, lawyer Mark Cohen said: “He has pleaded not guilty at all.”
Afterwards, Judge Lewis A Kaplan set a tentative trial date for Monday, October 2, when the court will hear charges of wire fraud, commodity fraud, securities fraud, money laundering, and campaign finance violations.
Federal prosecutor Danielle Sassoon estimated the trial could last four weeks, and said the government would hand over hundreds of thousands of evidentiary documents to defense attorneys.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate could face up to 115 years in prison if convicted on all charges.
Motions by the defense and responses to them by the prosecution will be due in April, with arguments on the motions taking place on May 18.
Bankman-Fried, was arrested in the Bahamas last monthwas previously released on $250m (£208m) bail on condition that he await trial at his parents’ home in Palo Alto, California.
Before the appearance, Bankman-Fried’s lawyer sent a letter to the judge, saying her parents in recent weeks have been the target of “media scrutiny, harassment, and threats, including communications expressing their wish that she suffer physical harm”.
The judge granted requests that names be redacted in court documents for two additional individuals lined up to sign Bankman-Fried’s personal recognizance bond.
The judge also imposed new bail conditions, saying Bankman-Fried cannot access FTX or Alameda’s assets.
Two of Bankman-Fried’s closest associates, Alameda chief executive Caroline Ellison, and former FTX chief technology officer Gary Wang, pleaded guilty last month to seven and four criminal charges, respectively, and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors.