Former Wall Street analyst Sam Bankman-Fried lays out allegations at FTX

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Former Wall Street analyst Sam Bankman-Fried lays out allegations at FTX

As Bankman-Fried prepares to stand trial on fraud charges this week, Lewis, who has previously chronicled the Wall Street misdealings that led to the 2008 financial crisis, set out allegations of management failings at FTX - and a plot to pay off Donald Trump to stand down from his 2024 U.S. presidential ambitions.

Bankman-Fried has been accused by the Department of Justice of transferring customers from the FTX exchange to sister company Alameda Research, where they were used to finance his lavish lifestyle. Bankman-Fried has pleaded not guilty to the charges and appears to have downplayed the incident to Lewis.

Lewis also appeared to support claims made by FTX's new leadership, which took over Nov. 11 when the company filed for bankruptcy, that were based on poor corporate governance under Bankman-Fried's tenure.

Sam is just not built to manage people, Lewis said, adding that Bankman-Fried did not know the names of other members of the board of directors and appears to have seen their role as mere rubber-stamping.

Before FTX collapsed, Bankman-Fried had also floated paying at least $5 billion to Donald Trump to keep him from running again, Lewis said.

Bankman-Fried 'genuinely thinks he's innocent', Lewis added, adding that FTX was a 'great real business' that could have survived if bad publicity hadn't led to a run on deposits.