The trial of Sam Bankman-Fried, former CEO of bankrupt crypto exchange FTX, has begun, revealing the complexities of the cryptocurrency world as a challenge for both the prosecution and defense, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The prosecution faces the task of simplifying and clarifying the complex world of digital assets for jurors who may be unfamiliar with them. To accomplish this, lawyers may present a straightforward narrative of deception and theft, using analogies to traditional assets such as stocks or bonds.
Defense team may take a different approach
The defense team may present cryptocurrency in a more complex manner to demonstrate regulatory ambiguities in the industry and argue that Bankman-Fried had no intention to defraud anyone. However, the judge has limited the use of expert witnesses in this regard.
Experts that Bankman-Fried’s lawyers wanted to discuss boom-and-bust cycles in crypto markets and FTX’s trading platform software have been denied by the judge. Additionally, the decision of whether Bankman-Fried will testify in court remains uncertain.
If Bankman-Fried can convince the jury that he had no criminal intent and that the exchange’s failure was due to management mistakes, he could be his own best witness, according to trial-consulting firm DOAR.
Bankman-Fried has pleaded not guilty and denied any criminal wrongdoing related to the collapse of FTX in late 2022. He faces potential imprisonment of over 100 years if convicted.