Federal prosecutors try to bar indicted FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried from utilizing encrypted messaging software program, citing efforts which will “constitute witness tampering,” in accordance to a letter filed in Manhattan federal court docket Friday.
Bankman-Fried reached out to the “current General Counsel of FTX US who may be a witness at trial,” prosecutors stated. Ryne Miller, who was not recognized by identify within the authorities submitting, is the present counsel for FTX US, and a former companion at Kirkland & Ellis.
The federal government claims that Bankman-Fried wrote to Miller through Sign, an encrypted messaging app, on Jan. 15, days after chapter officers at crypto change disclosed the restoration of greater than $5 billion in FTX property.
“I would really love to reconnect and see if there’s a way for us to have a constructive relationship, use each other as resources when possible, or at least vet things with each other,” Bankman-Fried allegedly instructed Miller.
Bankman-Fried has additionally been involved with “other current and former FTX employees,” the submitting stated. Federal prosecutors allege that Bankman-Fried’s request suggests an effort to influence the witness’s testimony, and that Bankman-Fried’s effort to enhance his relationship with Miller “may itself constitute witness tampering.”
Each Miller and a consultant for Bankman-Fried declined to remark.
In limiting Bankman-Fried’s entry to Sign and different encrypted messaging platforms, the federal government cites a necessity to “prevent obstruction of justice.” Federal prosecutors declare that Bankman-Fried directed Alameda and FTX through Slack and Sign, and ordered his staff set communications to “autodelete after 30 days or less.”
Citing beforehand undisclosed testimony from ex-Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison, the federal government claimed that Bankman-Fried indicated “many legal cases turn on documentation and it is more difficult to build a legal case if information is not written down or preserved.” Ellison pled responsible to a number of expenses of fraud and has been cooperating with the U.S. Lawyer’s efforts to construct a case towards Bankman-Fried.
Bankman-Fried pled not responsible to eight expenses in reference to the collapse of his multibillion-dollar crypto empire, FTX. He’s due in federal court docket in October, after being launched on $250 million bond.