Prosecution in SBF Trial Reveals Telling Twitter Messages from Bankman-Fried

Julia Smith
Last updated: | 2 min read

The prosecution in Sam Bankman-Fried’s landmark fraud case revealed several telling messages the fallen crypto founder had via direct message through Twitter.

Damning Twitter messages from Bankman-Fried

The prosecution called investigative analyst for the Southern District of New York, Shamel Medrano, to the witness stand, where he was presented with a number of incriminating messages Bankman-Fried wrote to Vox journalist, Kelsey Piper, on Twitter shortly after FTX collapsed.

In one particular message, Piper brought up a conversation she had with the now disgraced FTX founder on “whether you should do unethical sh-t for the greater good.’ At the time, Bankman-Fried replied it was not worth it before going on to allege he said lots of “dumb” statements that were “not true.”

“I feel bad for those who get f-cked by it,” Bankman-Fried wrote.

Bankman-Fried then touched on the lack of regulation in the cryptocurrency industry, telling Piper “there’s no one really out there making good things happen or preventing bad things from happening.” He went on to claim that his involvement in the regulatory sphere was “just PR” before writing “f-ck regulators.”

When discussing how FTX co-founder, Gary Wang, and FTX’s head of engineering, Nishad Singh, were reacting to the company’s demise, Bankman-Fried wrote that “Gary is scared, Nishad is ashamed and guilty.”

“Ashamed and guilty cause all the customer deposits are gone?” Piper asked.

“Yea,” Bankman-Fried wrote back.

When Piper published the information, Bankman-Fried asked her to take down the story as he believed he was not on record.

The defense pokes holes in the prosecution’s case

Wednesday afternoon proved productive for the defense lawyers as they cross-examined both accounting professor, Peter Easton, and FBI forensic accountant, Paige Owens. 

Easton, a renowned accounting academic, testified that the funds in Alameda Research and FTX’s accounts were far less than what they owed back to customers in liabilities and claimed customer funds were utilized for various expenditures.

However, the defense pushed back, alleging that Easton miscalculated Alameda Research’s debts by not excluding FTX customer accounts.

Moreover, the defense scrutinized Owens’ “last in first out” accounting method, claiming it can produce varying results while pointing out a potential error in her analysis.

Overall, it was one of the most effective days the defense has had in terms of sowing doubt in the prosecution’s case.

Judge Kaplan scolds counsel

Tension in the courtroom reached a fever pitch when Judge Lewis Kaplan reprimanded both the prosecution and defense for failing to execute proper examinations of witness Cory Gaddis, a records custodian for Google.

Gaddis’ purpose in the trial was unclear, but was brought to the witness stand to discuss Google metadata for seemingly only one piece of rather inconsequential evidence. However, he flew in from Texas to be there.

Judge Kaplan scolded counsel for the decision, stating Gaddis was “called as a mannequin” and that his being there was “just unreasonable.” He went on to tell counsel he “expected different behavior” from them.

The trial resumes Thursday, October 19th before breaking for the week.