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FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried Denies Witness Tampering Allegations

FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s defence team has denied allegations by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) that he attempted to tamper with witnesses. The DOJ’s motion to revoke Bankman-Fried’s bond ahead of his trial later this year was deemed to have an “extremely thin” factual basis, according to the defence’s court filing.

The DOJ had accused Bankman-Fried of sharing former Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison’s personal diary with the New York Times in an effort to harass her and potentially tamper with her testimony as a potential witness in his criminal trial. However, the defence stated that the information was already known to the reporter, who had previously written about Ellison’s writings and reflections on Bankman-Fried.

Regarding another instance pointed out by the DOJ, where Bankman-Fried reached out to FTX.US’s general counsel, the defence argued that it was Miller who initiated the conversation, and no evidence of witness tampering was found.

The defence team also defended Bankman-Fried’s use of a virtual private network (VPN), which the DOJ and the judge overseeing the case had questioned. They claimed that his use of a VPN was innocuous and lacked any evidence of wrongdoing.

Bankman-Fried faces seven different charges, including securities and wire fraud allegations. His trial is scheduled to begin in October. The DOJ had previously dropped a campaign finance charge against him, citing treaty obligations. Bankman-Fried had been released on bond while subject to strict bail conditions.

As the case progresses, both the DOJ and Bankman-Fried’s defence will continue to present their arguments before the trial begins, and the outcome will have significant implications for the crypto industry, given Bankman-Fried’s prominent role as the founder of FTX.

 

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