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Sam Bankman-Fried sent to jail after bail revoked

The ‘king of crypto’ has been accused of witness tampering and will now wait for his trial behind bars.

Sam Bankman-Fried

Cointelegraph/CC BY-3.0

Sam Bankman-Fried has been sent to jail and had his bail revoked by a US judge after it was found probable that he attempted to tamper with witnesses on at least two occasions while awaiting trial.

The 31-year-old FTX founder and former billionaire was first arrested on fraud charges last year after his crypto firm collapsed.

Bankman-Fried has been on bail since then, however, US Judge Lewis Kaplan deemed that the former ‘king of crypto’ “crossed a line” when he shared the private diaries of his former romantic partner, Caroline Ellison, with The New York Times.

“He has already — without violating any other bail condition save that he not commit another crime — gone up to the line over and over again,” Kaplan said.

Prosecutors requested that Kaplan revoke Bankman-Fried’s bail after the extracts were published, arguing he released them to harass Ellison, who has already pleaded guilty to the charges brought against her, and dissuade others from testifying.

Kaplan said the materials published were “something that someone who is in a relationship would be unlikely to share with anybody, still less The New York Times, except [...] to frighten”.

The FTX founder has been accused of misappropriating billions of dollars of customer deposits to cover losses at his affiliated hedge fund Alameda Research, where Ellison was CEO.

Ellison has pleaded guilty to the criminal charges brought against her and is expected to testify against Bankman-Fried at his 2 October fraud trial.

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