October 26, 2023

🥛 Sam Bankman-Fried takes the stand ⚖️

Today’s edition is brought to you by Origin Protocol – deposit your ETH or staked ETH to earn additional yield from a basket of LSDs and DeFi strategies.

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GM. This is Milk Road, the crypto newsletter that’s like catching all green lights on your way home – we get you to your destination quick & easy.

Here’s what we got today:

  • fkSBF is testifying ⚖️

  • The solution to falling ETH staking yields 👀

  • 2 guesses left to unlock $240M+ worth of BTC 🔓

  • Mastercard is teaming up with MoonPay 🍪


Ladies & gents, it’s happening…

Sam Bankman-Fried (formerly-known-as-SBF, or fkSBF for short) is going to take the stand today.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • The prosecution will call its last expert witness this morning. FBI agent Mark Troiano will testify about FTX’s use of auto-delete for internal communications.

  • Then it’s the defense’s turn to make its case. fkSBF and his lawyers go from defense → offense.

  • Recent court filings show the defense plans to call on 6 potential witnesses to testify. Only one of the witnesses’ identities has been revealed: Joseph Pimbley – a finance expert who will testify about FTX’s financials.

  • fkSBF is set to take the stand today. It’s expected his testimony will probably take up the entire day.

  • Then the prosecution will get to cross-examine fkSBF. If all goes according to plan, this will start on Friday.

Milk Road Take: When fkSBF got arrested 11 months ago, Milk Road HQ stocked up on champagne bottles to celebrate.

We saved a few and labeled them, “Open-When-fkSBF-Takes-The-Stand”.

Today, Milk Road HQ looks like this…

All jokes aside, we expect today to be an easier day for fkSBF. His attorneys are gonna tee up soft, easy questions for fkSBF to hit home runs.

But tomorrow’s cross-examination is a whole different ballgame. That’s where the 100 mph fastball questions are gonna be thrown.

We’ll see if fkSBF can take the heat then.

(Our prediction: he won’t be able to. The last time we saw fkSBF in a debate/argument, he folded like a chair. We fully expect him to crumble again.)


Ethereum is facing a major problem: ETH staking yields have fallen off a cliff.

The sad truth is that few people are using the network, and validators are feeling the pain.

But not all staking projects are sharing in that pain. Enter Origin Protocol.

They’ve weathered the storm and have been yielding 50%+ more than others.

And after a recent governance proposal, holders of their native token ($OGV) get a piece of the protocol’s revenue.

Here’s how Origin ETH works:

  1. Users deposit ETH, stETH, rETH, or frxETH to mint Origin Ether (OETH), or swap for OETH on a DEX

  2. OETH earns validator rewards from staking as well as additional yield from DeFi

  3. Staking rewards are issued daily, with no gas fees required

And when it comes to security, they don’t cut corners. They’re audited by the same folks that audit Coinbase and The Ethereum Foundation.

Boost your ETH yield with Origin!


Earlier this year we talked about the crazy story of Stefan Thomas.

  • He’s the former Chief Technology Officer of Ripple

  • He got paid 7,002 BTC to make a YouTube video called “What is Bitcoin?” back in 2011 (worth ~$244M at today’s prices)

  • He put the Bitcoin on an encrypted USB device but then lost the password to it and hasn’t had access since

Over the last 12 years, Stefan has been trying to guess the password to regain access to his now-9-figure fortune. It’s been twelve years of torture.

The bad news? He only gets 10 guesses.

After 10 failed tries, the device permanently encrypts its content (i.e. the BTC will be lost forever)

Stefan’s already used up 8 of his guesses. *gulp*

The good news? Unciphered (a cybersecurity company that specializes in crypto recovery) thinks they can get Stefan his BTC.

The company claims:

  • It’s developed a “secret IronKey password-cracking technique” that gives them infinite password attempts – not just 10.

  • It’s unlocked the same device Stefan has (2011 IronKey) over a thousand times, without destroying or damaging it.

  • It’s done 3 demonstrations for WIRED. 

And Unciphered just wrote an open letter to Stefan to convince him to let them try on his device…

The problem? Stefan isn’t budging.

He says he hired another cybersecurity company and an independent security researcher and wants to give them more time before looking elsewhere.

Turns out, Stefan is harder to crack than the IronKey itself.

Question of the Day: we’re curious… what would you do if you were in Stefan’s shoes?


Mastercard is teaming up with MoonPay. ​​MoonPay will incorporate compliance-friendly Mastercard's Crypto Credential system and integrate payment tech like Mastercard Send and Click to Pay.

Vodafone’s Digital Asset Broker (DAB) ran a proof of concept with Chainlink Labs to support its trade processes. The companies used Chainlink's cross-chain interoperability protocol (CCIP) to provide security and interoperability as data and tokens were shared across public and private blockchains.

Crypto’s Fear & Greed Index hit its highest level (72) since November 2021. *sniff sniff* nothing but greed in the air! (btw, don’t know wtf the fear & greed index is? We got you covered here.)

Polygon’s new crypto token (POL) is live on Ethereum’s mainnet. The new token is designed to support a vast ecosystem of various zero knowledge layer-2 chains through a native re-staking protocol.

LayerZero launched a new omnichain token. This will give users the ability to move wrapped stETH tokens (wstETH) from the liquid staking protocol Lido Finance across Ethereum, Avalanche, BNB Chain, and Scroll.



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DISCLAIMER: None of this is financial advice. This newsletter is strictly educational and is not investment advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any assets or to make any financial decisions. Please be careful and do your own research.