June 25, 2024

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Live news: Bankman-Fried denied bail in Bahamas and remanded in custody

FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried made his first court appearance in the Bahamas after being arrested on Monday in the Caribbean country at the behest of the US government, with his lawyer asking that bail be set at $250,000.

Jerome Roberts, the lawyer for the crypto exchange’s former chief executive also requested that Bankman-Fried be released from jail on electronic monitoring, according to Reuters.

Chief magistrate JoyAnn Ferguson-Pratt, who is overseeing the hearing said Bankman-Fried had the right to apply for bail, having adjourned the hearing earlier on Tuesday to consider whether the court had jurisdiction over bail.

Roberts told the court his client has been suffering from depression, insomnia, and attention deficit disorder for more than 10 years and that his medications include antidepressants and Adderall.

Roberts also argued that Bankman-Fried, who has no prior criminal convictions, is not a flight risk because he had the opportunity to flee the Bahamas, but remained. The former chief executive had to surrender his US passport upon arrest, and also intends to fight extradition to the US where he has been charged.

Federal prosecutors have charged Bankman-Fried on eight criminal counts including conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering, and campaign finance violations in what Damian Williams, US attorney for the Southern District of New York, called “one of the biggest financial frauds in American history”.