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Sam Bankman-Fried sent to jail as judge revokes bail over witness tampering, VPN use

Sam Bankman-Fried sent to jail as judge revokes bail over witness tampering, VPN use


SBF was free on $250 million bail, but using a VPN to watch a football game and contacting a witness over Signal has put the former crypto billionaire in prison as he awaits trial.

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Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried Attends Hearing To Determine Bail Revocation
Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) has been on house arrest in California since December while awaiting trial on fraud and money laundering charges over the crypto exchange’s collapse, but today he was sent to jail, as first reported by Inner City Press.

Judge Lewis A. Kaplan ordered the former billionaire remanded after prosecutors pushed to have his bail revoked, citing violations that included Bankman-Fried’s admitted usage of VPN software that he said was to watch an NFL game and the judge’s view that he had attempted to tamper with witnesses “at least twice.”

Docket entry from Friday’s Bond Revocation Hearing:

Defendant present with attorneys Mark Stewart Cohen and Christian R. Everdell. AUSAs Danielle R. Sassoon, Nicholas Roos, Samuel Raymond, and Diane Kudla present. Pretrial Services Officer John Moscato present.

Bond as to Samuel Bankman-Fried (1) Revoked and defendant ordered remanded.

Defendant moved to stay the Court’s ruling on pending appeal, which was denied by the Court. (Court Reporter Eve Giniger) (Mohan, Andrew)

The witness tampering covered Bankman-Fried sharing documents used in a New York Times article reporting on Google Docs diary entries written by Caroline Ellison, the former co-CEO of Alameda Research and SBF’s ex, who has already pleaded guilty and is cooperating as a witness against him. The other incident covered Bankman-Fried’s attempts in January to contact FTX general counsel Ryne Miller over email and the encrypted messaging platform Signal.