By pleading not guilty, Sam Bankman-Fried shoots himself in the foot according to the lawyers!

Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) is scheduled to appear in court today to begin criminal proceedings on fraud charges, where he is expected to plead not guilty. As reported by Reuters, his appearance is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. before Judge Lewis Kaplan in Manhattan.

According to previous reports, SBF is expected to plead not guilty before Judge Lewis, a decision that has been the subject of intense analysis by lawyers watching the case. Indeed, it may seem surprising to the general public that SBF was advised to plead not guilty by his attorneys, given that his co-executives Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang have both pleaded guilty to their 7 and 4 counts respectively.

As for Sam Bankman-Fried, the charges against him by federal prosecutors total 8, and if convicted, he faces up to 115 years in prison. The core of his fraud case is that he misappropriated funds from FTX clients to fund Alameda Research operations.

SBF engaged in some “discrepancies“including making luxury real estate acquisitions and political donations that have notably agitated Washington since the bankruptcy filing became public. Bankman-Fried has attempted to apologize to customers, creditors and investors of the defunct trading platform, which has more than $8 billion in liabilities to repay to investors.

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According to Sam Bankman-Fried’s version of events, he made mistakes while running the trading platform, but he did not believe that his actions had criminal overtones at the time.

Not guilty plea may not favor Sam Bankman-Fried

According to a former federal prosecutor, Danya Perry, who served as a former Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, the Department of Justice (DoJ) has a very good advantage in the current SBF case.

According to her, the DoJ has plenty of witnesses ready to testify if the case were to drag on to trial, but she does not want to be intimidated, she believes that the not guilty plea, if made, will be an attempt for SBF and his lawyers to negotiate a better deal with the amount of jail time.

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They have a mountain of written evidence, and in fact, confessions from the accused himself“, Perry said, adding, “So they’re not going to be in any particular hurry, and they’re not going to welcome a sweetheart plea deal“.

The current situation makes the not guilty plea fair because it can be amended later in the proceedings. With Bankman-Fried sitting at the business level of the failed business corporation, he may not see anyone to provide evidence against, as is customary for suspects who plead guilty, as explained by another former federal prosecutor, Ian McGinley.

Overall, it is believed that the not guilty plea may give prosecutors enough time to dig up other anomalies related to the exchange and its operators. SBF remains under house arrest after posting $250 million bail in December.

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