Court Sentences Top Manager of Bankrupted Crypto Exchange FTX to 7.5 Years in Prison

Former FTX Top Manager Sentenced to Prison

Ryan Salame, a former top manager of the now-defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been sentenced to 7.5 years in prison. The sentence comes after Salame was implicated in customer fund embezzlement and the making of illegal political contributions. His attempts to work with authorities did not result in a lighter sentence.

Salame’s career at FTX

Ryan Salame, age 30, became associated with FTX in 2019 after meeting company founder Sam Bankman-Fried at a blockchain conference. Salame initially joined the FTX- affiliated Alameda Research fund before rising to a top management position. He oversaw FTX’s headquarters’ relocation from Hong Kong to the Bahamas in 2021.

According to a Bloomberg report, Salame became the executive director of FTX Digital Markets, a Bahamian subsidiary of FTX, following the company’s Bahamian registration. He was charged with liaising with the local government and was active in misappropriating FTX client funds for purchase of luxury real estate and illegal political contributions in the US.

Details of the Misappropriation

Bankruptcy documents reveal that the FTX team spent $255 million on dozens of villas, apartments, and land plots in the Bahamas. A $30 million penthouse served as the FTX office, marking the most expensive of the purchases.

Cooperation with the Investigation

Salame admitted guilt to charges of fraud and illegal donations. Despite prosecutors seeking a 5-7 year sentence, he was handed a 7.5-year prison term. But his lawyers argue Salame was the first to alert Bahamian officials to possible underhand activities at FTX, even before the company’s bankruptcy. He also handed over more than 595,000 pages of internal documents used to charge FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried.

Other FTX Convictions

Bankman-Fried received a 25-year sentence for mass fraud, FTX client fund theft, and evidence tampering. His closest aides Caroline Ellison, Nishad Singh, and Gary Wang have also admitted guilt, awaiting sentences.


The failed FTX continues to have serious legal implications for its leadership. Despite Salame’s cooperation efforts with the investigation, his role in the company’s organized criminal activity led the court to sentence him to a lengthy prison term.

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