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​​Prosecutors drop second Sam Bankman-Fried trial 

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Prosecutors have opted against pursuing a second trial for Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced founder of FTX, a prominent cryptocurrency exchange. 

The US government conveyed its decision in a letter to Judge Lewis Kaplan, citing the redundancy of evidence already presented in Bankman-Fried's initial trial. 

Following a month-long proceeding in November, a jury swiftly found the former FTX chief executive guilty on all seven criminal counts.

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Including wire fraud, conspiracy, securities fraud, commodities fraud, and money laundering.

The US government continued in the letter: “Given that practical reality, and the strong public interest in a prompt resolution of this matter, the Government intends to proceed to sentencing on the counts for which the defendant was convicted at trial.”

The government explained to Judge Kaplan that the extensive evidence entered during the first trial would be considered during sentencing, emphasizing the practicality and the public's interest in a swift resolution. 

The charges stemmed from the collapse of FTX and its affiliated hedge fund, Alameda, in the previous year.

Initially scheduled for March, the second trial would have addressed additional criminal counts, such as bribery, bank fraud, operating an unlicensed money-transmitting business, and substantive securities and commodities fraud. 

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Damian Williams, the US attorney for the Southern District of New York, wrote in the letter to the Court that “a second trial would not affect the United States Sentencing Guidelines range for the defendant because the Court can already consider all of this conduct as relevant conduct when sentencing him for the counts that he was found guilty of at the initial trial.”

The sentencing, scheduled for March 28, holds severe consequences for Bankman-Fried, with the FTX founder facing the possibility of over 100 years in prison. 

Legal experts have speculated on the severity of the sentence, given the overwhelming consensus of the jury during the first trial. 

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Some anticipate a lengthy prison term, possibly close to the suggested 110 years, considering the immense scale of fraud, witness tampering, and the judge's apparent impatience with Bankman-Fried's behavior during the proceedings.

Comparisons to high-profile cases like Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos, arise, with expectations of potentially harsher terms for Bankman-Fried due to staggering losses suffered by investors. 

The sentencing will be a crucial decision for Judge Kaplan, balancing the need for punishment, deterrence, and respect for the law. 

While some foresee a substantial sentence, others argue for a more lenient approach, considering Bankman-Fried's age and the potential for positive contributions post-incarceration. 

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