Unlike FTX Group executives Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang, who pleaded guilty earlier during the investigation, Nishad Singh – the former chief engineer of the defunct crypto exchange – doesn’t have any charges leveled against him.
However, as previously reported by CryptoPotato, Singh’s GitHub appeared to be tied to FTX’s secret Korean account, which was allegedly used for masking the exchange’s liabilities and dubious practices.
It had the same privileges as Alameda’s trading account, such as exemptions from some of the more “stringent” risk management policies in place at FTX.
Plea Deal Possibly on the Table
Unfortunately for Singh, it appears the chickens have come home to roost. According to Bloomberg, the former FTX executive is currently in talks with the SDNY Attorney’s Office.
Singh reportedly attended a proffer session – meaning that the invited party, although not accused, receives limited immunity in exchange for a semi-formal discussion that would allow the court to determine whether they have any information that could be useful to the prosecution.
If it turns out to be helpful, this would allow the court to enter into a plea deal with Singh in return for his cooperation.
According to Sarah Paul, a former prosecutor at the Manhattan Court, possible witnesses are encouraged to come forth voluntarily as soon as possible, allowing them to get more leniency from the courts than otherwise possible.
“The first person in the door is often going to have a much greater chance of being accepted as a cooperator because there will usually be a greater need for their testimony.”
Fraud Already in Scope, Unlike Political Donations
While Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang have pleaded guilty to fraud and are cooperating with authorities on the subject, the accusations of money laundering via donations to political campaigns have not made much headway in court.
Since Singh was reportedly a big-league philanthropist and donor himself, it’s possible that his tentative cooperation with U.S. authorities would be centered around that side of the court case.
Singh funded Democratic candidates to the tune of $8 million in the last election cycle alone. Interestingly, one of the largest donations – $1 million to be exact – was made out to Mind The Gap, an action committee founded by Bankman-Fried’s mother.
Whether this could be a conflict of interest is unclear – however, it would definitely be a point of interest for SDNY prosecutors.
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