Incoming reports indicate that Sam Bankman-Fried’s legal team is readying their arguments for a pretrial release hearing before the U.S. appeals court on Tuesday as the billionaire founder of the defunct exchange FTX prepares for his trial on Oct. 3.
Bankman-Fried’s initial plea was overruled last month as the prosecutors argued that the defendant had been tarnishing the credibility of a state witness, Caroline Ellison, a former executive at Alameda Research.
Bankman-Fried’s Plea for Release
The reports indicate that Bankman-Fried’s legal team and the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office will each get five minutes to present their case in front of a 3-judge panel on the 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals. In a prior episode of this legal drama, Bankman-Fried was given a jail release through a $250 million bond imposed by the courts.
On Aug. 11, the tides of fortune turned dramatically against Bankman-Fried, as he was thrown to jail when U.S. District Judge Kaplan Lewis revoked his $250 million bond. In a spirited appeal, SBF argued that his confinement infringes upon his First Amendment right to engage with the press and attempt to mend his damaged reputation.
Furthermore, the former crypto titan passionately claims that his rights under the Sixth Amendment are being violated due to his inability to contribute to his case. He expresses frustration over limited access to his legal team and the challenges associated with obtaining necessary resources for his defense while incarcerated.
Just a week ago, Judge Kaplan, in a written ruling,SBF’s plea for a pretrial jail release, noting that the reasons were not compelling. Judge Kaplan mentioned that issues like insufficient internet to prepare for his trial fell short.
The judge noted that any difficulties faced by Bankman-Fried were of his own making. According to the ruling, despite the judge’s readiness to consider a delay in Bankman-Fried’s trial, the defendant has yet to request. Furthermore, the prosecutors believe that Bankman-Fried’s preparation difficulties are unlike any other detainee’s.
SBF Discrediting a Government Witness
As per, Bankman-Fried had attempted to tamper with witnesses by publicizing the personal writings of Caroline Ellison through a New York Times reporter.
Prosecutors argue that SBF attempted toa government witness, who has since pleaded guilty to fraud and will be testifying against him. Based on reports, Caroline Ellison and Sam Bankman-Fried were once romantically involved.
SBF is facing seven charges of fraud and conspiracy, rooted back from last year’s dramatic demise of FTX. He is accused of siphoning billions of dollars in customer funds to cover losses at Alameda, purchase luxury real estate, and contribute to U.S. political campaigns.