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 May 10, 2023

Sam Bankman-Fried attorneys push to get charges dropped

Representatives of FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried are looking to have 10 of the 13 charges against their client dismissed, according to a report by The Daily Wire

In December, just one month after his cryptocurrency exchange FTX failed and bankruptcy proceedings began, Bankman-Fried was arrested in the Bahamas and deported to the US.

Attorneys have argued that officials violated the extradition treaty because the Bahamian government issued a warrant of surrender "specifying that he be tried on seven of the eight counts" in the original indictment,

This even though American officials later brought additional charges without the island nation's consent. In December, Bankman-Fried was charged with conspiracy to conduct wire fraud, and several other campaign finance crimes.

In February, another indictment included four allegations, including conspiracy to conduct bank fraud and run an unauthorized money transfer company.

Bankman-Fried was then indicted in March for allegedly bribing Chinese Communist Party members, leading to additional charges. The Southern District of New York, which handles high-profile financial fraud cases, is handling the case of Bankman-Fried.

The entrepreneur, who lived with his parents in northern California and has maintained his innocence. He is scheduled to go on trial in early October.

“Rather than wait for traditional civil and regulatory processes following their ordinary course to address the situation, the government jumped in with both feet,” the filing asserted.

“Each of the charges contained boilerplate recitals of statutory language, followed by literally one sentence purportedly describing the basis for the charge.”

The charges stemmed from several of Bankman-Fried's firms controlled almost entirely by the disgraced cryptocurrency tycoon imploding late in 2022.

Bankman-Fried's attorney have claimed that the failure of his businesses took place in the context of broader issues within the cryptocurrency sector.

“As with a traditional bank run, numerous customers simultaneously sought to withdraw their assets, thus feeding fears that a collapse was inevitable,” the court filing said. “The market crash took down many of the major players in this sector, not just FTX.”

“Despite the public image it sought to create of a responsible business, the FTX Group was tightly controlled by a small group of individuals who showed little interest in instituting an appropriate oversight or control framework,” the attorney wrote.

“These individuals stifled dissent, commingled and misused corporate and customer funds, lied to third parties about their business, joked internally about their tendency to lose track of millions of dollars in assets, and thereby caused the FTX Group to collapse as swiftly as it had grown.”

Written By:
Charlotte Tyler

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