From billions to broke: Wealthy people who lost it all

FTX crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried found guilty on all charges of financial fraud

Stars Insider

03/11/23 | StarsInsider


Sam Bankman-Fried, the fallen “Crypto King,” has been found guilty on all charges of financial fraud after a four weeks at trial. The 31-year-old was the founder of FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange company created in 2019 that became a multi-billion-dollar empire, but crumbled within three years.

The prosecution accused Bankman-Fried of funneling billions from FTX into his other company, Alameda Research. They claim that the tech entrepreneur used Alameda like his own personal bank account, dipping in to buy luxury properties for his inner circle, finance risky investments, and make massive political donations. When an article was published suggesting that Alameda wasn’t financially stable, FTX’s users began withdrawing their funds en masse. FTX and Alameda went bankrupt and Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas. Following his extradition back to the US, he was charged with a host of crimes including wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering.

At trial, his lawyers told the jury that he was just a “math nerd” who got in over his head and made some mistakes. The prosecution argued that he was a criminal mastermind who “perpetrated one of the biggest financial frauds in American history – a multibillion-dollar scheme designed to make him the King of Crypto.” The jury found him guilty on all counts and he could potentially face decades in prison. His sentencing will take place in March 2024. It’s estimated that his net worth went from US$26 billion to zero within a matter of months.

Imagine having more money than you could ever spend, only to watch it slip through your fingers like grains of sand. From Hollywood stars to business magnates, the tales of individuals who soared to unimaginable financial heights only to plummet into bankruptcy are as riveting as they are cautionary.

These are stories of opulence turned into adversity, where fortunes evaporated and lavish lifestyles crumbled. From flamboyant spending sprees to disastrous business ventures and legal troubles, their journeys from billions to broke are peppered with details that serve as both lessons and a testament to the ephemeral nature of riches.

So without further ado, enter this gallery of the wallet-draining experiences of some of the wealthiest individuals who were on the brink of financial ruin. Simply click on.

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