The criminal trial of Sam Bankman-Fried has entered its third week. Some of the most infamous and familiar witnesses have taken the stand, including Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang, while lesser known personalities will testify in the coming days: Nishad Singh, Tareq Morad, Elan Dekel, Richard Busick, Ramnik Arora, and Delaney Ornelas.
These upcoming witnesses follow an explosive first week of testimony. Protos has been reporting every bombshell, live and in-person from the courtroom. Most recently, for example, BlockFi CEO Zac Prince testified that Sam Bankman-Fried misled him regarding Alameda Research’s finances. Specifically, he claimed that Bankman-Fried obscured the encumbrances of Robinhood and GBTC shares posted to BlockFi as collateral.
Bankman-Fried’s ex-girlfriend Caroline Ellison also testified against him last week, notably revealing allegations that FTX hired fake prostitutes to try and unfreeze funds and that Bankman-Fried’s father, Joseph Bankman, was part of a group chat where FTX leaders discussed further fraud.
This week, the drama continues. Here’s what to expect from upcoming witnesses.
This week’s witnesses in Sam Bankman-Fried trial
Former FTX director of engineering Nishad Singh has already pled guilty to six criminal counts, including campaign finance violations, fraud, and money laundering. He wrote some of the computer code featured in last week’s arguments.
Singh has known Bankman-Fried since high school. He says he initially respected Bankman-Fried’s brilliance. However, his opinion of his childhood friend apparently eroded when he discovered the misuse of FTX customer funds.
Prosecutors are welcoming Delaney Ornelas to the witness stand due to her involvement in FTX’s banking. She also served as head of human resources for FTX US, according to an organizational chart produced by George Lerner and published in the book Going Infinite by Michael Lewis.
Former FTX customer Elan Dekel is a vice president at AI company Pinecone. Like many FTX customers, some of his funds were frozen on the crypto exchange when it declared bankruptcy.
Richard Busick works for the FBI and specializes in analyzing cell phone geolocation data, which often serves as a valuable proxy for the phone owner’s location during a criminal investigation. He’s expected to testify that Bankman-Fried was in New York at specific times. His testimony will help establish legal jurisdiction for the case, as well as provide estimates as to the whereabouts of criminal activities.
Ramnik Arora previously held the title of FTX’s head of product. He was often involved in various acquisition deals, including negotiating the BlockFi bailout. Prosecutors’ exhibits already showed that he was a member of chat rooms, including the Signal room in which FTX insiders discussed ways to save the exchange. He hasn’t been charged with any crimes.
Tareq Morad is another FTX customer who already testified that he funded his FTX account through wire transfers to a North Dimension bank account. He says he lost between $250,000 and $280,000 in deposits when FTX declared bankruptcy. He also testified that he learned of the bankruptcy through the news and his work as a lobbyist.
Though lesser known than the witnesses that took the stand in the initial weeks of Bankman-Fried’s trial, these upcoming personalities will be integral to the prosecution’s case against him. Their testimony will flesh out the narrative surrounding the final days of FTX and Alameda Research.
We’re in Manhattan reporting from the courtroom. Head to our dedicated trial page for more on the trial, and folllow us on X to stay updated on their testimonies.