LUCKNOW (CoinChapter.com) — Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO and co-founder of the crypto exchange FTX, has pleaded not guilty in response to multiple frauds, money laundering, and campaign finance violations.
The legal proceedings took place on Aug 22, with the magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn presiding over the case. Bankman-Fried’s appearance in the Southern District of New York courthouse on Aug 22 marked a pivotal moment in the ongoing legal battle.
The accusations against him center around misappropriating customer funds for personal use and political contributions. Initially filed in December, these charges were later supplemented with additional counts of campaign finance violations earlier this month.
Under the watchful eye of Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn, the hearing unfolded. She read each charge individually, pausing to inquire if Bankman-Fried desired a complete reading of the indictment. His response was brief, a simple “no thanks.”
Legal Counsel Raises Medical and Dietary Concerns
The conditions prevailing at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, where Bankman-Fried has been detained since Aug 11, garnered significant attention during the proceedings. Mark Cohen, another attorney representing Bankman-Fried, strongly emphasized the prison’s conditions.
Cohen expressed dismay at the prison’s lack of vegan dietary options. He highlighted the challenge faced by Bankman-Fried, stating: “Because he’s following his principles, [Bankman-Fried] is only now subsisting on a diet of bread and water.”
During the court proceedings, SBF’s legal counsel raised concerns about their client’s medical condition. Cohen revealed that Bankman-Fried relies on Adderall, a medication commonly prescribed for individuals with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder.
He also follows a vegan diet but has not received his prescribed medication for the past 11 days. His counsel further revealed that Bankman-Fried’s supply of EMSAM, an antidepressant, was running low. These revelations shed light on the intricate personal challenges faced by Bankman-Fried during his detention.
The defense team for Bankman-Fried also invoked Sixth Amendment concerns, arguing that their client’s ability to prepare for trial has been compromised since his remand on Aug 11. They pointed out the lack of viable solutions to address this issue.
They suggested that the current circumstances are inhibiting a fair trial.
The recent developments in the FTX case unfolded after the revocation of Bankman-Fried’s. He left the courtroom in handcuffs. Before this, Bankman-Fried sought permission to spend weekdays outside incarceration to collaborate with his legal team on his defense.
A federal judge overseeing the case granted his request partially. The judge allowed SBF to engage with his legal team for approximately seven hours per week outside of jail.