It is possible that one of the most important witnesses in the current FTX investigation may be able to avoid all seven counts of the charges that have been brought against her by entering into a plea bargain.
According to the terms of the deal, former Alameda Research Chief Executive Officer Caroline Ellison would only be prosecuted for criminal tax offences and would be eligible for immediate release on bond in the amount of $250,000.
The agreement reached between Ellison and the Office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York to enter into a plea bargain was made public on December 21.
According to the paper, the former executive of Alameda will not be held accountable for any of the most serious allegations, for which she faced the possibility of receiving a jail term of up to 110 years.
Ellison was charged of committing crimes on seven different counts.Two people accused her of participating in and plotting to conduct wire fraud against clients of FTX. They also accused her of perpetrating the scam herself. The seventh count of the indictment against her said that she was involved in a conspiracy to launder money.
In return for Ellison’s cooperation, which consisted of providing the full disclosure of all the information and documents requested by prosecutors, the Attorney General’s Office agreed not to prosecute Ellison on any of those seven allegations of misconduct in office.
The arrangement does not provide Ellison with any protection against any other accusations that he may face from any other authority in the future.It also precludes the possibility of a criminal prosecution for breaches of tax law, even if such offenses were uncovered during the course of the judicial proceedings.
Ellison has consented to the bail restrictions, which include a $250,000 bond, a restriction that prevents him from leaving the United States, and the surrender of all travel papers. The federal prosecutors have agreed not to object to Ellison’s release under these circumstances.
Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX, is now in the custody of the FBI and is on his way back to the United States. Once he arrives, he will be sent immediately to the Southern District of New York to stand before a court.