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Vegan Former Crypto Billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried Endures 'Bread and Water' Diet in Jail, Lawyers Say The former CEO of FTX is facing pending charges of fraud and money laundering conspiracy.

By Madeline Garfinkle

Key Takeaways

  • Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried is surviving on limited diet in jail, lawyers say.
  • The disgraced crypto exchange founder is in jail in Brooklyn awaiting trial for a total of 13 charges related to fraud and conspiracy.
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Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and former CEO of crypto exchange FTX — and a vegan — is surviving on "only bread and water" in jail while he awaits a pending trial according to his attorneys.

On Tuesday, Bankman-Fried entered a plea of not guilty in response to an amended indictment that charged him with fraud and money laundering conspiracy, marking his first appearance in court since his bail was revoked on August 11th. The one-time billionaire is being held at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.

Bankman-Fried's legal team told the court that the detention center has failed to accommodate their client's vegan dietary requirements, as well as ensure the distribution of his prescribed Adderall medication.

"He's literally now subsisting on bread and water, which are the only things he's served that he can eat, and sometimes peanut butter," Mark Cohen, Bankman-Fried's lawyer argued, per CNN. "Your Honor, that's outrageous and needs to be remedied," he added.

Related: Who Is FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried and What Did He Do? Everything You Need to Know About the Disgraced Crypto King

Christian Everdell, another attorney on Bankman-Fried's case, told the judge these conditions have made it difficult for SBF to prepare for his hearing.

Bankman-Fried faces a total of 13 counts ranging from conspiracy to commit wire fraud to conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Yuki Iwamura/Bloomberg | Getty Images.

"There is no way for him to effectively prepare for his defense," Everdell told Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn on Tuesday, per The AP.

Judge Netburn stated that she would communicate with the Bureau of Prisons to address the issues, CNN added.

Bankman-Fried has pleaded not guilty to various charges of fraud and conspiracy linked to the downfall of his former cryptocurrency exchange, FTX, which ultimately collapsed in November. If found guilty on all counts, the former billionaire could potentially face a prison sentence exceeding 100 years.

FTX, once a prominent global crypto-trading platform endorsed by notable celebrities and featured in Super Bowl ads, suffered a rapid decline within a week.

As he awaits trial, Bankman-Fried is allowed to confer with his legal team on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., per CNN.

Related: A '30 Under 30' Recipient Was Indicted For Fraud — And He's Not the Only One. Here Are 5 Former Honorees Who Turned Out to Be Felons

Madeline Garfinkle

News Writer

Madeline Garfinkle is a News Writer at Entrepreneur.com. She is a graduate from Syracuse University, and received an MFA from Columbia University. 

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