A judge at a magistrates court in the Bahamas denied bail on FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried on Tuesday, citing an increased flight risk, saying he must remain detained by Bahamas authorities until Feb. 8, 2023, hours after the U.S. federal criminal complaint against Bankman-Fried, which accuses him of massive fraud in FTX, was unsealed in New York. Earlier on Tuesday, the legal team for FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried announced at the Bahamas Magistrates Court that it will fight extradition to the U.S., where he faces charges from several federal agencies, including wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, securities fraud and conspiracy to violate campaign finance laws. The 30-year-old founder of FTX has been charged by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with fraud and violating campaign finance laws.
On Tuesday, the SEC, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and Southern District of New York unsealed charges that allege in broad strokes that FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried conspired to defraud FTX customers and lenders, devising schemes to misuse funds, all the while marketing FTX as the safest cryptocurrency trading option. The SEC also charged Sam Bankman-Fried with transferring billions of dollars invested by FTX customers into his private hedge fund, Alameda Research, allegedly to finance a lavish lifestyle in the Bahamas, buying up luxury properties, and making donations to political candidates to influence government policies. Federal prosecutors in Manhattan charged Bankman-Fried with eight felony counts, including conspiracy and wire fraud, in connection with allegedly misusing billions of dollars of customers funds prior to last months spectacular fall from grace of his crypto empire.
Earlier on Tuesday, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams in New York said that Bankman-Fried had made illegal campaign donations to both Democrats and Republicans using the stolen customers money, branding him as a participant in one of the biggest financial scams in American history. In court on Tuesday, local Bankman-Fried lawyer Jerone Roberts tried and failed to get him released without bail, citing a lack of jurisdiction and the fact that Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX, is a resident permanent resident of the Bahamas, according to Nassau Guardian.
The former CEO of the crumbling crypto-exchange, dressed in a blue suit with no tie, dropped his head and embraced his parents after the Bahamian judge said he was at too much risk to flee, ordering him sent to the Bahamas Correctional Institution through Feb. 8. A Bahamian judge has refused bail to the collapsed FTX magnate Sam Bankman-Fried, and both his parents, both Stanford professors, are appealing the decision.
After he was arrested in the Bahamas, the judge denied bail, saying that he was a big flight risk, sending him to local jail instead. A judge in the Bahamas decided that, due to his finances and the severity of the charges against him, he was a flight risk, and he was going to be held in custody. His legal team asked a judge on Tuesday to let him out on bail with a condition that he wear an ankle bracelet and report daily to the police until his next court appearance.
The Bahamas judge ordered a Feb. 8 extradition hearing. A Bahamas judge is struggling to enter – complaining she has never seen this kind of craziness at the courts, according to Coindesk. The bail hearing for the FTX founder was scheduled for Dec. 13, but a judge ordered him held in detention until Feb. 8, when a case will be heard.
A bail application was filed by his lawyers, asking that the 30-year-old cryptocurrency executive be released on medical grounds, with lawyers saying that he is not a flight risk. His fate was in the hands of a judge on Tuesday in The Bahamas, overseeing hearings into the future of the disgraced executive in Nassau, the nations capital, at the Pink Courthouse. A hearing into the future of the disgraced executive in the Pink Courthouse, Nassau, the nations capital. The courts decision to deny bail follows a marathon hearing at the House Financial Services Committee, in which lawmakers interrogated current FTX chief executive John G. Rae III about the exchanges implosion.
FTX Chief Executive Officer John Ray testified Tuesday to members of the White House about the FTXs lack of corporate oversight, which he has never witnessed. When asked by Representative Patrick McHenry, Republican of North Carolina, whether FTX had any differentiation from Alameda Research, FTX CEO John Ray said, Absolutely not. Meanwhile, John Ray, the firms new chief executive, told a U.S. Congressional Committee that FTXs failed crypto-exchange appears to have been a product of being controlled by a tiny, wildly unexperienced, un-sophisticated set of individuals.
A Bahraini judge did not issue Sam Bankman-Frye bail, while US prosecutors charged the 30-year-old entrepreneur with embezzling billions from investors of FTX crypto-exchange. With The New York Times reporting that Sam Bankman-Fried could be fighting extradition, it is likely that he will stay jailed at Fox Hill well past Feb. 8 — unless his lawyers are more successful arguing for bail, or convincing a judge that the arrests should not have occurred, since the behavior alleged by the US prosecutors was not criminal behavior in the Bahamas.