US prosecutors have asked a federal court to tighten bail conditions for Sam Bankman-Fried to prevent the disgraced businessman from contacting his former colleagues. According to court documents provided to the New York Times, Justice Department attorneys allege Bankman-Fried attempted to write to the general counsel of FTX’s US arm via Signal and email earlier this month. The notice “indicates an effort to influence Witness-1’s potential testimony,” the file says.
“I’d really like to get back in touch and see if there’s a way for us to have a constructive relationship, use each other as resources if possible, or at least check things out with each other,” the message said. sent the Bankman-Fried Justice Department. The DOJ has asked the judge overseeing Bankman-Fried’s criminal case to bar him from contacting current and former FTX employees and from using Signal or any other encrypted or ephemeral messaging app. Following the request, SBF’s legal team accused federal prosecutors of attempting to paint their client in the “worst possible light”. They allege Bankman-Fried attempted to contact FTX US general counsel and CEO John Ray to offer “assistance” to avoid interfering in his criminal trial. His attorneys also claim that since Bankman-Fried doesn’t use the app’s auto-delete feature, a Signal ban isn’t necessary.
Prosecutors allege that SBF’s use of Signal matches “a history” of using the app to hide its dealings with FTX. Prior to FTX’s implosion in November, Bankman-Fried and former Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison were reportedly part of a secret “wirefraud” group chat on Signal. During his tenure at the exchange, SBF is also reported to have instructed employees to enable Signal’s message-disappearing feature.
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