Following a bail hearing for the disgraced cryptocurrency guru that left a judge persuaded that he had repeatedly attempted to sway witnesses against him, FTX creator Sam Bankman-Fried was ordered to jail on Friday to await trial.
After accusing Sam Bankman-Fried of attempting to intimidate a crucial witness in his fraud case last month by showing a journalist her personal writings and in January by contacting the general counsel for FTX via an encrypted message, U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan revoked his bail.
Sam Bankman-Fried’s attorneys maintained that he shouldn’t go to jail for attempting to shield his name from an onslaught of negative press.
A defense attorney requested an immediate stay of the ruling and stated that an appeal of the imprisonment order would be made.
Since his extradition from the Bahamas in December, the 31-year-old Sam Bankman-Fried has been under house arrest at his parents’ Palo Alto, California, home.
Sam Bankman-Fried is accused of defrauding investors in his businesses and illegally diverting millions of dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency from customers using his FTX exchange.
Bankman-Fried’s $250 million bail package places significant restrictions on his phone and internet use.
The attorneys of Sam Bankman-Fried were taken aback two weeks ago when prosecutors demanded that he be imprisoned on the grounds that he had broken the law by divulging to The New York Times the private writings of Caroline Ellison, his ex-girlfriend and the former CEO of Alameda Research, a cryptocurrency trading hedge fund that was one of his companies.
Sam Bankman-Fried, also known as SBF, is facing a trial that is scheduled to start on October 2 after being accused by the US government of masterminding one of the biggest financial scams in history last year.
From an article by WLIW, after charging the Sam Bankman-Fried with witness tampering, government prosecutors attempted to withdraw SBF’s bail and have him detained in custody until his trial.
If found guilty of such accusations, the former crypto-star may be sentenced to life in prison.
Attorneys for Sam Bankman-Fried unsuccessfully fought against his imprisonment on the grounds of the First Amendment.
Judge Kaplan had issued a temporary gag order to Sam Bankman-Fried (a.k.a SBF) last month while he attempted to reach a decision regarding the allegations of witness tampering.