FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried left Manhattan Federal Court after his arraignment and bail hearings on December 22, 2022 in New York City. Image: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Judge rules Sam Bankman-Fried’s $250 mln bail co-signers should be named

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A U.S. federal judge has granted several motions filed by news organizations to reveal the identities of two unnamed co-signers of FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s US$250 million bail bond after he was arrested and charged with fraud and other crimes. Four individuals signed the bail bond, one of the largest on record, and two of them were his parents.

See related article: Sam Bankman-Fried’s family members are not cooperating with FTX attorneys, court documents claim

Fast facts

  • U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan wrote in a Monday ruling that the information sought — names of bail sureties — traditionally is regarded as public information.
  • “The non-parental bail sureties have entered voluntarily into a highly publicized criminal proceeding by signing the Individual Bonds,” Kaplan wrote in the document. “In my view, the Individual Bonds should be on the public record.”
  • Kaplan will hold his order until Feb. 7 in case of an appeal, he wrote.
  • Bankman-Fried’s lawyers had argued the identities should not be revealed on the grounds of risk to the security of the people involved. Bankman-Fried has pleaded not guilty to eight charges that include money-laundering and is scheduled to stand trial in October. 
  • Earlier this month, a number of news organizations, including The New York Times, Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal, requested the court to disclose the identities of Bankman-Fried’s bail sponsors for “public interest” in response to an earlier motion filed by the founder’s lawyers to redact the two names.
  • FTX attorneys last week asked the bankruptcy court for permission to issue subpoenas to former top FTX executives and advisors, which include Bankman-Fried’s family members, as they may hold critical information to the recovery of funds.

See related article: Bankrupt FTX exchange has recovered US$5 bln worth of ‘liquid’ assets, lawyers say

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