During the trial of Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX, the crypto industry was taken aback by startling claims made by Caroline Ellison, his ex-girlfriend and the former head of Alameda Research. Ellison’s testimony unveiled a possible plot to manipulate Bitcoin prices. She mentioned a note saying, “Keep selling BTC if it’s over $20K,” hinting at a deliberate attempt to keep the cryptocurrency’s value below the $20,000 mark. Significantly, such alleged interventions could greatly affect the dynamics of the digital currency market.
Ellison Exposes FTX’s $13 Billion Borrowing
Additionally, Ellison brought to light more concerns regarding the financial practices within the FTX sphere. Under Bankman-Fried’s leadership, Alameda Research borrowed $13 billion from FTX clients by September 2022, she revealed. The platform used these funds to clear debts and serve as collateral for various investments, raising questions about its financial transparency.
Moreover, Ellison spoke of a potentially troubling episode involving Genesis, a retail lending platform. Per her statements, Genesis sought a whopping $500 million from FTX when facing a looming insolvency. Despite existing reservations about the transaction’s sincerity, Bankman-Fried reportedly directed her to transfer the money to Genesis.
Judge Kaplan Denies Bankman-Fried’s Evidence Plea
However, as the trial advances, the defense strategy is also unfolding. In a recent turn, Judge Lewis A. Kaplan rejected the plea from Bankman-Fried’s legal team. They had hoped to bring evidence related to the role of counsel in formulating the loans given by Alameda Research during the cross-examination of Gary Wang, the former FTX chief technology officer.
Read Also: Caroline Ellison Admits Alameda Research Maintains 7 Alternative Balance Sheets
This move followed the defense’s filing to similarly cross-examine Ellison, suggesting that Bankman-Fried had instructed her to enable auto-deletion features on some of her messaging accounts. The defense argues that highlighting Alameda or FTX legal teams’ involvement may demonstrate no criminal intent, despite claims.
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