Sam “Sorbee” Sharma: Where is Centra Co-Founder Now?

Among the most prominent names to be a part of the Centra Tech cryptocurrency case, Sam “Sorbee” Sharma, AKA Sohrab Sharma, stands out, given his position as the organization’s Co-Founder. Not only was Sam one of the driving forces in making the company as famous as it was, but he was also the one to perhaps face the harshest legal action out of all the people involved. Though he does not appear in Netflix’s ‘Bitconned,’ his actions have certainly made the world curious about his current whereabouts.

Who is Sam “Sorbee” Sharma?

Both Sam “Sorbee” Sharma and Ray Trapani were actually in the same high school, with the latter not being much of a fan of the former. Following school, they came in contact again when Ray joined forces with his friend Bert to establish Miami Exoctics. It was Bert who proposed the idea of bringing Sam to the company as one of the employees, something that Ray agreed to despite his reservations, though he claimed that Sam rarely worked as the face of the company.

However, when Miami Exotics started to seem like a doomed idea, Sam approached Ray with the idea of establishing a cryptocurrency company. In the Netflix documentary, Ray admitted that he had little to no idea about cryptocurrency at the time, but Sam was certainly highly excited about the modern form of currency. Together, the two decided to start a new company called Centra Tech, which claimed to tackle one of the biggest issues that owners of cryptocurrency seemed to be facing: using their blockchain money in day-to-day transactions.

Additionally, Centra Tech launched its own form of cryptocurrency called Centra coins, though it was truly the idea of utilizing one’s cryptocurrency in everyday life through a Centra debit card that brought people on board. However, the shining business model was far from what it seemed like. Investors poured over 25 million dollars into the business during a July 2017 coin offering, which they thought would be the next groundbreaking thing in the market. This also meant that Sam and his partners started coming under more and more scrutiny about their company’s details.

From a CEO who now Ray Trapani admits never actually existed to celebrity deals that cracked under the slightest pressure, Centra Tech was coming under scrutiny day by day. It certainly did not help Sam that he had to address the company’s legitimacy often in order to make sure that their scam was not uncovered. However, Nathaniel Popper’s New York Times article combined with the fact that Centra Tech hired a lawyer that never existed meant that when the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) started to look into the company’s workings, all unfolded, including Sam’s heavy involvement in trying to keep the company up and running, even by trying to partner up with organizations in South Korea.

Sam “Sorbee” Sharma is Now in Prison

In April 2018, the SEC decided to take legal action against the people behind Centra Tech. Sam Sharma himself was charged with conducting a fraudulent and unregistered coin offering using the name of Centra Tech and taking close to $32 million from the investors. As the man who had done the most research about cryptocurrency and had allegedly come up with the majority of the ideas that Centra Tech was based on, Sam’s arrest certainly gained the attention of the public.

 

The legal battle against Sam became slightly easier for the prosecutors thanks to Ray Trapani’s willingness to testify against him and Robert Farkas, the third cog of the Centra Tech machine. On July 17, 2020, Sam pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud, wire fraud, and mail fraud. This was followed by Sam’s sentencing on March 4, 2021, under which he was to spend eight years in prison. According to Robert, the sentencing took place via social distancing in a room in which Sam’s parents were also present. His sentence also included a three-year supervised release, a $20,000 fine, and an order to forfeit $36,088,960.

Given his leading role in the scheme that Centra Tech had conceived, Sam’s sentence was significantly longer than Robert’s, while Ray himself was sentenced to time served. Given the time that Sam had already served prior to his sentencing, he is scheduled to be released on August 19, 2027. As of writing, he is at the Federal Prison Camp in Montgomery, Alabama. While he is not directly featured in the Netflix documentary, the moviemaker did try to get in contact with him and his team.

As per the statement shared by Sam’s team, he did not commit the crimes that the movie might be accusing him of. “In the near future, [he] looks forward to telling the true story of Centra Tech and its background,” his team added. According to those who know Sam, they believe that he may still have the money that he gained through Centra Tech and has simply stored it safely with no traceable connection to him. He is seemingly still in a relationship as well, something shared by Ray’s mother, Kerri.

Read More: Ray Trapani: Where is Centra Co-Founder Now?

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