A former inmate at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center has revealed details of Bankman-Fried’s life in prison leading up to his landmark fraud trial.
Talking to crypto content creator, Tiffany Fong, former inmate Gene Borello claimed the FTX founder was at one point on suicide watch and did not eat or shower for several days.
Borello and Bankman-Fried were housed alongside each other at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn as the FTX founder awaited the chance to present his case.
Borello claims a fellow inmate attempted to extort the “timid” Bankman-Fried by suggesting he pay a fellow inmate for “protection,” claiming “they knew he had a lot of money.”
Subsequently, Borello confronted the prisoner in Bankman-Fried’s defense, leading to a physical altercation that caused Borello to spend time in solitary confinement.
“You could tell he didn’t want to be there,” Borello said of Bankman-Fried. “He was just nervous.”
SBF’s sentence length
Moreover, Borello claimed Bankman-Fried “just didn’t understand” that he could face a sentence that would amount to life in prison.
According to an alleged conversation Fong had with the FTX founder, Bankman-Fried said he believed his chances of getting off with no jail time were “around 50/50.”
“He believed he was only getting twenty years,” Borello said.
While Bankman-Fried’s sentencing is not scheduled until March 28th, 2024, the former FTX CEO and founder could face a maximum sentence of 115 years in prison, a term length Borello disagrees with.
“You mean to tell me that a guy who stole money is going to get life in prison and never hurt a person in his life?” Borello told Fong. “I don’t agree with that.”
On November 2nd, Bankman-Fried was found guilty on seven different fraud-related charges following a grueling month-long trial that saw multiple of his former associates and closest friends testify against him.
When asked whether or not Bankman-Fried expected the guilty verdict, Borello said no.
“He was not worried about the case,” claimed Borello.
“A very interesting character”
Prior to his trial, Bankman-Fried was released from prison on $250 million bail, one of the largest in U.S. history. However, Judge Lewis A. Kaplan revoked it in August following evidence of Bankman-Fried committing witness tampering.
Borello also warned Bankman-Fried about Judge Lewis A. Kaplan, who he says has been called “the most vicious judge in the Southern District of New York.”
Borello, who is currently out of prison, has not spoken to the FTX founder since before the trial began.
“He was a very interesting character,” Borello said. “I can tell you that much.”