Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced former CEO of FTX, sought to pay former President Donald Trump $5 billion not to run for president again, according to biographer Michael Lewis.
Lewis clarified that he was not sure if the former FTX CEO, who has been indicted for many alleged crimes surrounding the collapse of the FTX digital currency exchange, actually spoke to Trump or Trump’s team.
The “number that was kicking around,” Lewis said, “when I was talking to Sam about this was $5 billion.” He added, “Sam wasn’t sure that number came directly from Trump.”
The author of The Big Short became familiar with Bankman-Fried before the collapse of FTX. His new book, Going Infinite: The Rise and Fall of a New Tycoon will be released on Tuesday.
The biographer also noted that Bankman-Fried questioned if paying a politician to withdraw from a race was legal.
“They were still having these conversations when FTX blew up,” he said.
Lewis said that the alleged transaction never happened because Bankman-Fried did not have $5 billion “anymore.”
“That only shocks you if you don’t know Sam,” the biographer said.
Bankman-Fried was the second-largest Democrat donor during the 2022 congressional midterm elections.
The New York Post continued:
Prosecutors said he used $100 million in stolen FTX deposits to fund those donations, which he hoped would spur the passage of crypto-friendly legislation.
Bankman-Fried’s illicit politically-driven handouts are among seven counts spanning wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering that the former FTX will face when his highly-anticipated trial begins on Tuesday.
Bankman-Fried reportedly paid Super Bowl champion Tom Brady $55 million for a week’s worth of work to represent FTX.
Sean Moran is a policy reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.