Disgraced FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried Says Criminal Charges Were a 'Rush to Judgment.' Now He's Asking the Court to Dismiss Them. Bankman-Fried has been charged with 13 counts of fraud in connection to his now-bankrupt FTX cryptocurrency exchange.
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On Monday SBF's legal team asked Manhattan federal court to dismiss 10 of the 13 criminal charges against him, including the foreign bribery charge, campaign finance charge, and a bank fraud charge, according to the New York Times.
Bankman-Fried was accused of misappropriating billions of dollars in customer funds in a fraud scheme between his FTX cryptocurrency exchange and his Alameda Research crypto trading firm. FTX filed for bankruptcy in November 2022 after a bank run exposed an $8 billion hole in the company's accounts. SBF was arrested in the Bahamas and extradited to the United States in December. He is currently free on a $250 million bond as he awaits his trial, which is scheduled to start on October 2.
SBF has pleaded not guilty to the 13 fraud and conspiracy charges against him. In the court filing, his legal team argues that 10 of the charges violate the extradition process or are too vague, stating that the prosecution has an "eagerness to run up charges against Mr. Bankman-Fried," per NYT.
Additionally, his lawyers claim that prosecutors "rushed to judgment" in the wake of the broad market crypto crash in 2022.
"Rather than wait for traditional civil and regulatory processes following their ordinary course to address the situation, the government jumped in with both feet, improperly seeking to turn these civil and regulatory issues into federal crimes," his lawyers wrote in a court filing, according to Reuters.
Prosecutors must respond to SBF's dismissal request by May 29. U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan is scheduled to hear arguments on June 15.