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Sam Bankman-Fried, a dangerous fraud

FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, Bernie Madoff, Monster of Wall Street, Netflix, John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy, Whitey Bulger
Photo courtesy: Vanity Fair

Economy

Sam Bankman-Fried, a dangerous fraud

While crypto scam cartels are robbing-off people every second, most governments are still reluctant in taking effective measures in identifying every member of the crypto cartels and punish them. At the same time, some African and Middle Eastern nations are still allowing fraudulent crypto ventures in continuing activities and even propaganda through media coverage and organizing promotional events. Dubai is one of the countries which is flooded by bunch of crypto fraudsters.

Following the collapse of fraudulent crypto venture FTX run by Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) and subsequent fall of few others, it is already become crystal clear that these are Ponzi schemes created by several groups of fraudsters, while SBF has already been exposed as a dangerous fraud – much bigger than Bernie Madoff.

A recent Netflix documentary titled ‘Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street’ gives us an understanding of how people are lured into financial fairy tales which were critical drivers in allowing the scam schemes in luring people towards their fraud traps. Bernie Madoff supplied fake account information and was able to emerge unscathed. Similar pattern of fraud is happening with all of the existing cryptos while in course of time, these certainly will collapse thus creating hundreds and thousands of victims who would be robbed-off their life-savings.

Joe Berlinger, director of the Netflix documentary, ‘Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street’ told the media, “There were so many times that the SEC should have stepped in and didn’t. Again, with Sam Bankman-Fried, now the SEC is yelling and screaming about crypto, but where were they before this thing happened?”, whose films have looked at John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy and Whitey Bulger. “One of my goals was to lean into the wider culpability story, which has not been told. What the show demonstrates is that greed makes people act a certain way. A lot of Wall Street people who should have known better, and I think many who did know better or suspected something, nonetheless chose to look the other way, because too much money was being made”.

Berlinger hopes Monster of Wall Street can help people protect themselves from fraud and set the record straight on the many people and institutions that enabled Madoff. Here, he speaks with Town & Country about delving back into the 2008 case, the parallels with Sam Bankman-Fried, and what Bernie Madoff has in common with serial killers.

Although cryptos are now already proved to be nothing other than Ponzi schemes, people will not know much about the fate of – for example Binance or others, as those crypto cartels are spending millions of dollars towards media. They are stopping major media outlets from exposing the realities by offering advertisements or “cash incentives”.

While crypto scam cartels are robbing-off people every second, most governments are still reluctant in taking effective measures in identifying every member of the crypto cartels and punish them. At the same time, some African and Middle Eastern nations are still allowing fraudulent crypto ventures in continuing activities and even propaganda through media coverage and organizing promotional events. Dubai is one of the countries which is flooded by bunch of crypto fraudsters.

Meanwhile, over half a million people who deposited cash with collapsed crypto lender Celsius Network have been dealt a major blow to their hopes of recovering their funds, with the judge Martin Glenn in the company’s bankruptcy case ruling that the money belongs to Celsius and not to the depositors. This judgement certainly leaves everyone who invested in cryptos at bay. Hundreds of people are commenting on Celsius Network and the recent court verdict.

Here are few of the comments:

Andrew: For years Celsius promised extravagant interest rates in the neighborhood of 20 percent for people in a kind of fantasy version of a real-world bank, driving many who had no interest in crypto to enter the market.

Hopefully these people have now learned the hard way one of the iron laws of investing. Risk and return are ALWAYS linked. The higher the return the high risk.

Jade: It’s amazing how full-grown adults will invest their money in something that they couldn’t explain to a 5-year-old. They have no idea how it works, no real idea of where their money is or where it’s going, and no way to prevent it from disappearing in the blink of an eye.

Michael: Greed makes people do irrational things. Most people would not turn over their money if a complete stranger walked up to them on the street and promised them 20% interest. However, that same stranger can set up a flashy web site with the same promises and people rush to throw money at him.

Zoel: From Wikipedia, “A Ponzi scheme is a form of fraud that lures investors and pays profits to earlier investors with funds from more recent investors. The scheme leads victims to believe that profits are coming from legitimate business activity (e.g., product sales or successful investments), and they remain unaware that other investors are the source of funds. A Ponzi scheme can maintain the illusion of a sustainable business as long as new investors contribute new funds, and as long as most of the investors do not demand full repayment and still believe in the non-existent assets they are purported to own”.

Peter: Why is it we never read a happy story about crypto? I’ll tell you: it’s because the very nature of crypto lends itself to fraud and scams. It is the ideal tool to separate people who don’t know anything about finances or crypto from their hard-earned money. And now the latest wrinkle is that many crypto investors are finding out they don’t even own the money in their accounts.

Ricky: Crypto was always going to leave people in tears. Governments the world over should have shut crypto down at the start, it is a threat to the security of every monetary system and the national security of all. It seems perhaps governments, or their agents more to the point, may have been feeling the greed and thinking they would find a way to profit from it. The internet is not a country, it is a tool that can be used for good but it also is used by some very bad people, wolves knocking on your door. If I were an unscrupulous person, I could start a travel business taking reservations for vacations the next galaxy over and plunking money down on that would make as much sense as buying into crypto and I wouldn’t be at all surprised that there would be people signing up.

Brad: I am not a crypto investor – and don’t think I will ever be – but my God – with bankruptcy courts freezing all assets and saying the service owns them and the FTX Ponzi madness etc., anyone sane who invest in new crypto schemes at this point is insane.

Jeffrey: They are not investors. They are pawns in a Ponzi scheme. Some of them are still in denial and believe Crypto is actually practical technology.

Lucy: Most of the crypto world is just a giant Ponzi scheme, and as always, the people who buy in late end up completely fleeced.

Keith: A total fraud on the “investors.” But who really cares (other than those who put $$$ into this scheme)? Crypto is such an obvious hoax that it is hard to believe anyone would “invest” in it. Clearly, those paying into such a scheme were just trying to make a quick buck. Ha, ha. If it is too good to be true, it isn’t true.

Sohail Choudhury is the Executive Editor of Blitz

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