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Lawyers are Trying to Hide the Identity of SBF's Bail Guarantors

  • A judge rejected a deal that would have allowed Bankman-Fried to use specific chat apps.

  • On February 7, Bankman Fried's lawyers submitted a last-minute appeal to stop the disclosure of the guarantors' names.

08-Feb-2023 By: Simran Mishra
Lawyers are Trying t

Two bond guarantors for SBF cannot be identified until at least 

February 14 thanks to the appeal, which was submitted on the final day possible.

The identities of two guarantors who signed off on part of Sam Bankman-Fried's $250 million bail bond will remain a secret for the time being, after a judge rejected an agreement that would have allowed Bankman-Fried to use certain messaging apps. Last minute on Feb. 7, Bankman-Fried's lawyers filed an appeal to block the release of the guarantors' names, which did not contain any further arguments against the disclosure. 

This appeal will prevent the order from being enforced until Feb 14, allowing for an application for a further stay. This appeal was expected after a Jan. 30 ruling in which United States District Judge Lewis Kaplan granted a joint petition from eight major media outlets seeking to unseal the guarantors' names.

At the time, Kaplan noted that his order was likely to be appealed due to the unprecedented nature of the circumstances. He argued that Bankman-Fried's lawyers' claims that the guarantors would face similar intrusions as Bankman-Fried's parents were unfounded, given that the size of their individual bonds was much smaller, at $200,000 and $500,000 respectively.

Joseph Bankman and Barbara Fried were the other two parties who had signed off on the bond. Furthermore, the judge stated that the guarantors had voluntarily signed individual bonds in a highly publicized criminal proceeding, thus exposing themselves to public scrutiny.

On February 7, Judge Kaplan rejected a joint agreement between Bankman-Fried's legal team and prosecutors that would have modified bail conditions and allowed Bankman-Fried to use certain messaging apps. Without providing a reason for the denial, Judge Kaplan stated that the matter would be further discussed in a hearing on February 9. 

Previously, on February 1, Judge Kaplan had ruled that Bankman-Fried was prohibited from contacting FTX or Alameda Research employees due to the potential risk of inappropriate contact with potential witnesses, following the revelation that the former CEO had been in contact with past and present staff.

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