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FTX founder’s bail revoked by US judge amid witness tampering

In a major turn of events, Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of defunct cryptocurrency exchange FTX, finds himself in a precarious position as his bail has been revoked by a US judge. The decision comes in light of compelling evidence suggesting witness tampering, a move that could have profound implications for the impending fraud trial scheduled for October.

U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, who presides in federal court in Manhattan, announced the bond revocation during a hearing. That decision was fueled by the belief that Bankman-Fried, indicted for his role in the cryptocurrency exchange’s downfall, tampered with witnesses on at least two occasions. A defense request to delay Bankman-Fried’s detention pending an appeal was denied.

This unexpected development could disrupt Bankman-Fried’s preparations for the upcoming trial. Charges against the 31-year-old former billionaire include the alleged misappropriation of billions of dollars in FTX client funds to cover losses at his Alameda Research hedge fund. Despite the serious allegations, Bankman-Fried has consistently maintained her innocence.

The courtroom scene was emotionally charged as Bankman-Fried was led away in handcuffs after his bond was revoked. His parents, both respected law professors at Stanford University, were present at the hearing. The poignant image of her mother’s tearful gesture and her father’s hand over her heart captured the emotional gravity of the moment.

Bankman-Fried had been living under the terms of a $250 million bond, confined to his parents’ residence in Palo Alto, California, since his arrest in December 2022. However, a recent development in which allegedly shared personal writings of a former partner. and Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison with a New York Times reporter sparked prosecutors’ move to revoke his bail. Ellison, along with other former partners, has already pleaded guilty to fraud charges and is expected to testify against Bankman-Fried during the trial.

While Bankman-Fried’s legal team argued that her actions were within her First Amendment rights and motivated by a desire to safeguard her reputation, Judge Kaplan expressed concern that her actions could be interpreted as an attempt to obstruct justice. This concern was compounded by the fact that the sharing of the writings occurred during an in-person meeting at her parents’ residence, which could suggest an effort to evade detection.

This high-stakes legal battle continues to garner attention, shedding light on the interaction between cryptocurrency companies and the legal framework that governs them. With bail revoked and Bankman-Fried’s fate hanging in the balance, the road to the Oct. 2 trial remains fraught with uncertainty.

This article is sourced from and written by AI.

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