Yet another Sam Bankman-Fried’s attempt to leave the prison was squashed by Judge Lewis Kaplan.
Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of bankrupt crypto exchange FTX, will stay in custody until his trial begins on October 3rd.
Bankman-Fried’s request for temporary release was turned down by District Judge Lewis Kaplan of the United States District Court on September 12th.
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Bankman-Fried had argued that his ability to prepare for the trial was compromised due to the poor internet connectivity in his prison facility. However, Judge Kaplan rejected this reasoning, stating that the former FTX head failed to offer specific details to support his claim that inadequate internet access would materially affect his defense.
The defendant had not made any detailed showing as to specific material that he claims he has been unable to access personally and the reasons why any such personal inability actually would impede his defense.
In his ruling, Kaplan also noted that Bankman-Fried’s legal team could find ways around the issue.
There has been no suggestion that counsel is incapable of running any searches across the Relativity or AWS databases that defendant may desire and then providing him with the results.
Interestingly, Bankman-Fried’s counsel had brought up the issue of poor internet service in prison in a letter dated September 8th, lamenting that even loading a homepage could take up to 10 minutes. Despite this, no request was made to postpone the trial scheduled for October 3rd.
Bankman-Fried is facing a total of 12 criminal charges in two separate trials. The second trial is set to start in March 2024.
With the court’s refusal to grant temporary release to Sam Bankman-Fried based on his complaints about inadequate internet access for trial preparation, it appears he will remain in custody until his trial commences on October 3rd. This development adds another layer of complexity to the legal battles surrounding the former FTX CEO.