Sam Bankman-Fried's Bahamas Court Appearance Adds to Confusion
Earlier reports suggested the former FTX CEO was going to waive any extradition challenge.
Counsel for Sam Bankman-Fried appeared blindsided by Sam Bankman-Fried's decision to appear in a Bahamas court Monday.
Updated at 21:40 UTC: Sam Bankman-Fried has agreed to be extradited to the U.S., reports the Washington Post, citing a person familiar with the matter. His counsel is reportedly preparing the necessary documents and Bankman-Fried is expected to appear back in a Bahamas courtroom.
Weekend reports suggested Bankman-Fried had changed his mind and was not going to challenge extradition to the U.S., where he faces a host of criminal charges relating to misuse of customer funds and misleading of investors from the Department of Justice, Securities and Exchange Commission and Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
Eyewitness News in Bahamas reported that Bankman-Fried attorney Jerome Roberts told Judge Shaka Serville he was unaware until minutes prior to the hearing that there would be a court appearance today. He reportedly called this morning's proceedings "shocking" and "premature."
Reuters, meanwhile, reported that Bankman-Fried's counsel requested to see the U.S. indictment against the former FTX CEO prior to agreeing to waive an extradition challenge – a curious request given the indictment has been public for nearly one week.
Bankman-Fried's extradition trial had been set for Feb. 8, 2023. He will also try again for bail in a hearing on Jan. 17, 2023.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.
Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.