Two FTX Execs to Face Sentencing This Autumn

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  • Two former FTX executives are set to be sentenced later this year having already pleaded guilty
  • Nishad Singh and Gary Wang have testified against Sam Bankman-Fried
  • Wang has admitted to lying about FTX’s insurance fund during the trial

Two former senior executives of the collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX are scheduled to be sentenced later this year having already pleaded guilty to criminal charges and testifying against their former boss, Sam Bankman-Fried. Nishad Singh, the former Director of Engineering, and Gary Wang, the former Chief Technology Officer, will face their sentencing on October 30 and November 20, respectively. The pair revealed key details during the trial of Sam Bankman-Fried, with FTX co-founder Wang famously admitting to lying about an insurance fund on the platform.

Singh and Wang Fessed Up to Save Themselves

Following the downfall of FTX in November 2022, Singh and Wang quickly pleaded guilty and provided critical testimony against Bankman-Fried in order to reduce their sentences. The pair offered up tantalising glimpses into how the exchange had operated, revealing that they had become aware of significant wrongdoing at FTX shortly before its bankruptcy filing. 

During Bankman-Fried’s trial in October 2023, Singh testified about discovering an $8 billion deficit in FTX’s finances around September 2022. Despite this knowledge, he continued to authorize transactions involving misappropriated customer funds. Singh described how these funds were used for real estate investments, venture capital, campaign donations, and speculative trading activities.

He also admitted to programming systems that routed FTX customer deposits to Alameda bank accounts and gave Alameda “special privileges” not available to other FTX customers. Caroline Ellison, the former CEO of Alameda Research, also pleaded guilty to seven criminal charges, including wire fraud and conspiracy, but has not yet been sentenced.

Pair Hope to Avoid Prison

Wang’s testimony was equally damaging. He confessed to conspiracy charges, including wire fraud and securities fraud. During the trial, Wang detailed his role in developing FTX’s website and identified a piece of code that falsely represented FTX’s “public insurance fund.” This fund was supposed to reassure investors about FTX’s financial stability but was actually fabricated.

Both Singh and Wang testified that their cooperation with the authorities was motivated by a desire to avoid prison. Wang pleaded guilty to four charges, encompassing wire fraud and various conspiracy offenses, while Singh admitted to six charges, including fraud and conspiracy. Singh expressed hope for no jail time during his testimony, while Wang stated that working with the FBI seemed like the right thing to do to stay out of prison.

Another former executive, Ryan Salame, was recently sentenced to 7.5 years in prison for campaign finance violations but did not testify against Bankman-Fried.