Sam Bankman-Fried is said to be in bail talks with prosecutors

Sam Bankman-Fried’s legal team is discussing a deal with federal prosecutors that could allow three people with knowledge of the matter to release the disgraced cryptocurrency mogul on bail upon his extradition to the United States.

The terms of the deal remain fluid, people said, and any agreement would require the approval of the federal judge handling Mr. Bankman-Fried’s case. But under the terms discussed, the founder of collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX could be granted bail with very restrictive conditions, including house arrest, two of the people said. One person said that electronic surveillance is also being discussed. It was not clear what further action might be required.

Prosecutors in the Southern District of New York have charged Mr. Bankman-Fried, 30, with fraud, accusing him of orchestrating a year-long scheme that culminated in FTX’s bankruptcy. The company was based in the Bahamas and Mr. Bankman-Fried is currently being held there awaiting extradition to the United States.

A spokesman for the Southern District of New York declined to comment on bail talks. Mark Cohen, an attorney for Mr. Bankman-Fried in New York, did not respond to a request for comment.

Fox News previously reported some details of the bail talks.

The allegations against Mr. Bankman-Fried came to an end in a saga in which one of the most powerful crypto billionaires in the world went from being an industrial titan to an accused fraudster and seen his fortune disappear. Before FTX collapsed, Mr. Bankman-Fried was a frequent presence in the halls of Congress pushing for legislation to make the United States friendlier to the crypto industry. The fall of FTX has given the crypto industry a black eye and is already being cited as a cautionary tale.

Mr. Bankman-Fried’s extradition to the United States is scheduled to continue on Wednesday. It was stopped once earlier this week after a chaotic hearing in the Bahamas, where a local lawyer representing it cast doubts on whether his client would agree to extradition. The attorney, Jerone Roberts, later reversed himself and paved the way for Mr. Bankman-Fried to be transferred to New York.

Mr. Bankman-Fried was denied bail in the Bahamas after he was arrested at his luxury apartment complex on the island of New Providence last week. At a hearing on 12/13, a judge in the Bahamas said Mr. Bankman-Fried’s financial resources made him a flight risk.

Once he arrives in the United States, Mr. Bankman-Fried is scheduled to be tried in Federal District Court in Manhattan, where his case will be handled by Judge Ronnie Abrams. Authorities accuse him of embezzling billions of dollars in FTX deposits, thereby defrauding customers, investors and lenders.

Mr. Bankman-Fried would not be the first extreme wealth defendant to be arraigned in the South Circuit Courthouse, nor would he be the first to try to negotiate a way to avoid incarceration at trial. Some were successful; others were not.

Bernard L. Madoff, the notorious Ponzi schemer, posted $10 million bail and remained under house arrest in his penthouse apartment until he pleaded guilty in 2009. He died in prison last year at the age of 82 while serving a 150-year sentence.

In 2016, Reza Zarrab, a Turkish gold dealer charged in an Iran sanctions case, offered to post a $50 million bail backed by $10 million in cash, in stay in a rented apartment and wear a GPS tracking device. He also suggested paying for 24-hour security guards to ensure he couldn’t escape.

But the judge, Richard M. Berman, refused bail, saying the proposal was “unreasonable because it helps promote injustice and unequal treatment in favor of a very small group of criminal defendants who are extremely wealthy, like Mr. Zarrab.” .”

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