Former FTX Executive Doesn’t Testify To Avoid Allegations Regarding $100M Contribution

Key Points:

  • FTX’s ex-executive Ryan Salame won’t testify in the crypto donation case.
  • Private messages reveal Salame’s alleged role as a proxy donor for the FTX co-founder’s political donations.
  • Bankman-Fried faces trial for fraud and political contributions; Salame hasn’t pleaded guilty yet.
Former FTX executive Ryan Salame is declining to testify under oath in connection with his alleged involvement in an illicit campaign donation scheme within the cryptocurrency realm, according to statements from prosecutors, Bloomberg reported.
Former FTX Executive Opts Out of Testimony Amid Political Donation Allegations
Ryan Salame

Salame, formerly the co-chief executive of FTX Digital Markets, reportedly contributed more than $24 million to Republican campaigns. Authorities assert that he acted as a proxy donor for FTX’s co-founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, intending to influence cryptocurrency policy in Washington.

The details of Salame’s actions were disclosed in private messages sent to a family member, as outlined in a letter submitted by federal prosecutors to the Manhattan federal court on Monday.

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Reports from Bloomberg indicated that Salame had been engaged in discussions with federal prosecutors regarding potential guilty pleas, including violations of campaign-finance laws. However, entering a plea doesn’t automatically entail agreeing to testify for the government.

Salame shared a close association with Bankman-Fried, who is slated to stand trial in October on charges related to an alleged extensive fraud at FTX that purportedly led to substantial losses for clients and investors.

Prosecutors are seeking to admit messages sent by Salame as evidence. These messages purportedly reveal an arrangement with Bankman-Fried to make donations on the co-founder’s behalf.

Prosecutors allege that Bankman-Fried made $100 million in political contributions to influence cryptocurrency regulations in the US and conceal the proceeds of his alleged fraud. Bankman-Fried has entered a not-guilty plea.

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