SBF’s Legal Battle: Scaramucci’s Grim Outlook on Testimony
FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried began testimony in his own fraud trial on Thursday, defending himself from accusations of intentionally defrauding his exchange’s customers.
Prior to taking the stand, SkyBridge Capital founder Anthony Scaramucci said that the former crypto mogul’s odds against government prosecutors are bleak.
“He’s gonna get skinned alive;” said Scaramucci in an interview with CNBC on Thursday. “There’s no way to escape. He thinks he’s going to outfox the prosecutors, but they’re very, very well experienced with this stuff.”
Scaramucci was close to Bankman-Fried as a business partner and had a chance to see him in person during the downfall of his crypto empire in November 2022.
At the time, Scaramucci had noted that the “war room” was “despondent” and that he could already tell that a small group of FTX insiders had done something without telling most others at the company.
That former assessment has now been corroborated with extensive testimony from Bankman-Fried’s inner circle throughout the trial, all of whom claim to have participated in the fraud led by their boss.
Despite former positive reservations about the defendant, Scaramucci has since labeled Bankman-Fried the “Bernie Madoff” of crypto and said that the “ninth circle of hell” awaits him.
“They’re going to point out all the contradictions, and they’re gonna prove the criminal intent with him on the stand,” Scaramucci continued. “This is only going to add years to his sentence.”
Prior to FTX’s collapse, the exchange had bought a 30% stake in Scaramucci’s investment firm. The founder said in April that the fallout had not harmed his company so severely as many would expect.
Thus far, Bankman-Fried has argued that his understanding of FTX’s terms of service would have allowed FTX to loan funds to its sister-hedge fund Alameda Research. According to CNN, the exchange founder nervously fidgeted and sipped water frequently during his Thursday examination.
Scaramucci on SBF’s Character
Scaramucci also commented on Michael Lewis’s new book about Bankman-Fried, which crypto industry pundits thought treated the founder highly charitably.
“He tries to be objective in the book, but only sort of,” Scaramucci said. “At the end of the day, Michael never would have written the book if he thought Sam was a supreme felon that many of us feel.”
Scaramucci maintains that he could not feel Bankman-Fried’s “arrogance” one year ago, and said he’s “embarrassed” to have introduced him to multiple heads of state.