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Bankman-Fried Despatched to Jail After Leaking Writings of Ex-Lover, Now a Star Witness Towards Him

Bankman-Fried Despatched to Jail After Leaking Writings of Ex-Lover, Now a Star Witness Towards Him

2023-08-11 14:50:42

FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried is being thrown in jail pending his upcoming trial on fraud costs after a federal decide concluded Friday his airing of private musings from a key prosecution cooperator amounted to witness intimidation and jury tampering.

“Witness tampering and obstruction poses a hazard to group and threat of such actions would assist pretrial detention,” U.S. District Choose Lewis Kaplan stated on the bail violation listening to. Whereas Bankman-Fried had a First Modification proper to proclaim his innocence, the decide stated, free speech protections don’t cowl communications supposed to intimidate or tamper with witnesses, a felony.

Bankman-Fried was instantly taken into custody within the courtroom by U.S. marshals following the ruling. He eliminated his shoelaces, tie and jacket and handed them to his protection lawyer earlier than being escorted from the courtroom. His attorneys requested the decide to droop the ruling pending attraction, however their request was denied. They declined remark as they left courtroom.

The one-time Crypto King, Bankman-Fried had beforehand been allowed to stay free pending trial, confined to residence detention at his dad and mom’ home in Palo Alto, California on $250 million bond. The trial is scheduled to start in October and anticipated to final no less than a month.

The personal notes by Caroline Ellison, his ex-girlfriend and the chief government of Alameda Analysis, a hedge fund affiliated with FTX that traded on the crypto change, have been written within the months earlier than it collapsed final fall. They described how her fizzled romantic relationship with Bankman-Fried left her sad and disengaged from her job. They have been featured in an article in July in The New York Instances.

Kaplan stated he discovered the writings “extraordinarily private and intimate” and that they “portrayed Ms. Ellison in an unfavorable gentle.” By leaking them, he concluded, Bankman-Fried “supposed no less than partly to harass Ellison and affect her testimony.”

Ellison pleaded responsible in December to costs stemming from her function in FTX’s collapse. She has agreed to testify towards Bankman-Fried throughout his trial in a bid for a extra lenient sentence, and prosecutors have stated in courtroom filings that she is a crucial witness for his or her case.

Caroline Ellison, former CEO of Alameda Research
Caroline Ellison, former CEO of Alameda Analysis and the star witness on the U.S. trial towards Sam Bankman-Fried.Caroline Ellison/Twitter/X

Legal professionals for Bankman-Fried didn’t deny that he shared the writings with the Instances, however preserve he had a proper to take action and that the article was already in progress and knowledgeable by different sources. Mark Cohen, Bankman-Fried’s lawyer, stated through the listening to that prosecutors lacked proof of intent to intimidate Ellison, and stated their declare was based mostly on a “skinny file with lots of spin.”

After the writings appeared within the Instances, Kaplan signed a gag order barring Bankman-Fried from chatting with the information media. However prosecutors sought the extra step of getting Bankman-Fried jailed pending his trial, saying his sharing of Ellison’s musings amounted to intimidating a witness and tampering with the jury pool. Prosecutor Danielle Sassoon stated his actions amounted to a “deliberate evasion of his bail situations.”

In courtroom filings, prosecutors have famous Bankman-Fried was already warned by the decide for contacting a distinct prosecution witness on an encrypted messaging service early within the case and saying he hoped they might have a “constructive relationship.” Through the listening to, Kaplan additionally concluded that the sooner contact amounted to an try to affect a witness.

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FTX imploded amid disclosures that Alameda had borrowed $10 billion in buyer funds on deposit at FTX and used the cash to again high-risk buying and selling positions that finally turned towards it. FTX filed for chapter in November and Bankman-Fried resigned as chief government.

Prosecutors accuse Bankman-Fried, 31, of dishonest traders and stealing deposits from clients of FTX, one of many world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges earlier than its collapse in November. He’s accused of squandering the cash backing the dangerous trades positioned by Alameda, in addition to on political contributions and a lavish life-style.

Bankman-Fried has been in prolific contact with journalists protecting the collapse of FTX and his legal case, based on courtroom filings. Over a interval of serval months, he logged greater than 1,000 calls with reporters, and has additionally been in frequent contact with the creator Michael Lewis, who’s writing a e book concerning the matter.

It was not instantly clear the place Bankman-Fried can be held in custody pending trial. Prosecutors stated they’d seemed into preparations with the Putnam County jail in upstate New York the place he would have higher entry to trial preparation supplies through pc, however Choose Kaplan stated he believed there can be related entry on the federal jail in Brooklyn. The problem was not resolved through the listening to. Kaplan famous the Brooklyn lock-up is “not on anyone’s checklist of five-star amenities.”

Sam Bankman-Fried, Caroline Ellison
Sam Bankman-Fried goes again to jail after leaking former girlfriend Caroline Ellison’s private diary pages to the New York Instances.Michael M. Santiago/Getty Pictures; Caroline Ellison/Twitter
Sam Bankman-Fried, Caroline Ellison
Sam Bankman-Fried goes again to jail after leaking former girlfriend Caroline Ellison’s private diary pages to the New York Instances. Michael M. Santiago/Getty Pictures; Caroline Ellison/Twitter
Sam Bankman-Fried, Caroline Ellison
Sam Bankman-Fried goes again to jail after leaking former girlfriend Caroline Ellison’s private diary pages to the New York Instances. Michael M. Santiago/Getty Pictures; Caroline Ellison/Twitter

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