Judge revokes Sam Bankman-Fried’s bail, jailing FTX founder ahead of October trial
The Department of Justice previously pushed to revoke Bankman-Fried’s bail in late July
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Sam Bankman-Fried’s bail has been revoked.
The revocation was handed down during a Friday court hearing dedicated to deciding whether the FTX founder’s bail should be pulled. Bankman-Fried will be held in custody ahead of his impending trial, scheduled for October of this year.
In his ruling, Judge Lewis Kaplan reportedly said there was probable cause to believe that Bankman-Fried had attempted to tamper with the witnesses, and therefore violated the terms of his bail.
The Department of Justice previously pushed to revoke Bankman-Fried’s bail in late July, arguing that the FTX founder’s bail conditions were “insufficient.”
The DOJ cited a few instances where Bankman-Fried had violated his bail, with the most recent happening on July 20. Federal prosecutors have accused Bankman-Fried of witness tampering after he allegedly attempted to discredit the former head of Alameda, Caroline Ellison, by leaking her diary entries to the New York Times.
However, prosecutors didn’t take issue with Bankman-Fried’s communications with the press, saying he has the right to “speak and defend himself.” But they alleged that Bankman-Fried has “repeatedly” tried to “corruptly influence witnesses and interfere with a fair trial through attempted public harassment and shaming.”
Just last week, the DOJ announced the impending filing of a superseding indictment to incorporate the campaign finance charges — which had previously been dropped — into seven existing charges.
“The defendant’s use of customer deposits to conduct a political influence campaign was part of the wire fraud scheme charged in the original indictment. And as part of the originally charged money laundering scheme, the defendant also concealed the source of his fraudulent proceeds through political straw donations,” the DOJ said in the letter.
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