DoJ Seek to Revoke SBF’s $250M Bail Bond


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The United States Department of Justice plans to revoke the bail bond granted to Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF), the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of now-bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX.

According to the July 28th filing, the embattled billionaire allegedly tampered with witnesses including leaking personal documents that belong to Caroline Ellison, his business associate and one-time romantic partner. 

Former FTX CEO Released on Bail

A few days after his extradition to the U.S., Bankman-Fried was released on the basis of paying a $250 million bond

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He was also required to have two guarantors who were later revealed to be Larry Kramer, a former Stanford Law School Dean, and Andreas Paepcke, a senior research scientist at Stanford University. The criteria of this bail required that he remains at home, be tracked, and have to give up his passport. Hence, he had to move in with his parents in Palo Alto, California. 

SBF Violates Bail Terms 

Soon after, SBF requested a modification to the bail. He tried contacting the present general counsel of FTX US through email and Signal, an encrypted messaging application. 

Through these means of communication, the young billionaire expressed his desire to reconnect and establish a structured relationship. Specifically, he emphasised how both parties could be mutually beneficial on different subjects.

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Signal played a significant role in helping SBF evade supervision. The app’s auto-deletion feature effectively wiped previous chats between the defendants and several third parties in his lawsuit, thereby complicating the investigation.

In the case of the former CEO of Alameda Research Caroline Ellison, SBF released the contents of her diary which was linked with FTX to a reporter who planned to feature it in a New York Times article.

Judge Kaplan to Make a Decision Concerning SBF’s Bail

Consequently, the DoJ levied a gag order on the former FTX CEO, preventing him from communicating further with unauthorized third parties. Instead of quietly accepting his fate, SBF also requested the same gag order for other witnesses in his criminal trial.

John Reed Stark opines that Judge Lewis Kaplan has different ways to approach the matter. He could either choose to see Bankman-Fried’s action as an attempt to influence witnesses and then decide to modify the terms of his bail or totally revoke the bail. At the same time, Stark acknowledged that picking any choice would be a tough call for the judge. 

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