Sam Bankman-Fried, the embattled founder of FTX crypto exchange is making headlines once again as he demands his release from detention at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.
Bankman-Fried, whose bail was revoked in early August, argues that he is facing challenges in preparation for his upcoming trial citing issues such as faulty internet, Fortune reported on September 10.
Lawyers for the defendant in a letter to the judge on September 8 claimed that prosecutors have not provided their client with the essential computer resources needed to review millions of pages of evidence related. The documents are related to the FTX collapse in 2022 with the trial set for early October.
The focal point of the latest dispute has revolved around Bankman-Fried’s computer access, sparking disagreements related to battery life and the logistics of transporting him to the courthouse for twice-weekly access to an internet-enabled laptop. In a development that occurred in late August, Judge Lewis Kaplan instructed the involved parties to reach a resolution.
The lawyers also raised concerns about his inability to bring food and water to the visitor access room, asserting it his constitutional right.
“The defendant cannot prepare for trial with these kinds of limitations,” the lawyers stated.
While the presiding judge had previously suggested that Bankman-Fried’s team could request a trial postponement, they have instead opted to seek his temporary release.
Genesis of SBF legal saga
The legal saga began when the Department of Justice filed charges against Bankman-Fried in December, prompting him to agree to extradition from his residence in the Bahamas, where FTX had its headquarters. Initially, a judge granted him bail, allowing him to reside with his parents in California
However, the conditions of his bail quickly became contentious after Bankman-Fried was accused of reaching out to key FTX figures in an alleged attempt to tamper with witnesses and using a VPN to watch football games.
His situation worsened when he leaked the private diary of FTX executive Caroline Ellison, his former girlfriend, to a New York Times reporter in July. Subsequently, the judge revoked his bail, sending him to the Brooklyn detention center.
The complexity of the case, involving alleged wire fraud, campaign finance violations, and money laundering, has led to the accumulation of millions of pages of evidence.
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