The prosecution and defense teams in the criminal trial against Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF), the accused founder and former CEO of bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX, appear to be relying on the testimony of Carolyn Ellison, the former CEO of FTX’s sister trading company. Alameda Research.
According to Bloomberg a reportboth sides seek to prepare the jury for Ellison’s testimony, as she is considered one of the few people who knows the truth about SBF due to her on-off romantic relationship with him.
SBF and Ellison history
The 28-year-old former Alameda CEO first met SBF at Wall Street trading firm Jane Street Capital. While Ellison was a Stanford-educated mathematician who did not excel at the company, she left with SBF to start Alameda in 2017.
Ellison initially took on the role of a low-profile trader at Alameda before rising to co-CEO with Sam Trabucco, SBF’s friend from high school math camp, in 2021. She later became sole CEO when Trabucco left the trading company a year later. .
Amid these developments, she had an unstable relationship with SBF, and she broke up with him and reconciled with him several times until early 2022. People who knew her said she seemed to be living in her ex-boyfriend’s shadow while they were together.
When things opened up in November, Ellison tearfully told Alameda employees while sitting on the trading room carpet that the company had embezzled billions in FTX client deposits and that the SBF empire was on the verge of collapse.
After FTX filed for bankruptcy and investigations began, Ellison pleaded guilty and signed a cooperation agreement with authorities and has since pointed to all evidence relevant to the case while SBF has insisted he is not guilty on all counts.
One of the few who know the truth
Prosecutors have portrayed Ellison as SBF’s romantic partner and confidant, who knows the truth about what really happened in the FTX empire. On the other hand, SBF’s lawyer, Mark Cohen, described her as an executive who failed to mitigate any exposure in Alameda after SBF put her in charge.
However, Ellison, who is considered the star witness against the SBF, is ready to tell her side of the story when she finally testifies against her ex-boyfriend. Her testimony could play an important role in the jury’s decision.
Free Binance $100 (Exclusive): Use this link to sign up and get free $100 and 10% off Binance Futures in your first month (conditions).
PrimeXBT Special Offer: Use this link to register and enter code CRYPTOPOTATO50 to receive up to $7,000 on your deposits.