On Friday, federal prosecutors wrote to U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, asking him to modify Sam Bankman-Fried’s bail to include a ban on personal communications with current and former FTX employees and from and Alameda research.
The request from the Department of Justice (DOJ) comes after Bankman-Fried contacted at least one FTX employee – identified as Ryne Miller, the current general counsel of FTX US – for allegedly trying to influence his testimony in the future. “I would like to restart and see if there is a way we can have a meaningful relationship, use each other when possible, or at least explore things in each other.”, citing the DOJ letter quoting Bankman-Fried as telling Miller. .
The lawyers also asked Judge Kaplan to bar Bankman-Fried from using “any encrypted or ephemeral call or message, including, but not limited to, Signal.”
In their letter to the court, prosecutors said Bankman-Fried used the Signal app to contact Miller, along with other current and former FTX employees — described by prosecutors as “the same group, up to and including recently, are the heads of the defendant who. he takes care. that it is paid in money, and therefore it is the easiest to bully people” – ask to speak. Prosecutors said the Bankman-Fried affidavit was an effort to undermine “[Miller’s] ability to testify,” which they described as “primarily related” to Miller’s first-hand knowledge of Bankman-Fried’s conduct at the time. FTX failure.
“[Miller] joined the defendant in a Signal conversation on Slack during a significant event in November 2022,” prosecutors said. “In these messages, among other things, [Bankman-Fried] gave instructions to destroy the Alameda bank account in order to recover funds from FTX clients, and indicated that he transferred approximately $45 million of funds Alameda and FTX US to fill outstanding gaps in FTX. US bonds.”
The statement of the lawyers, if true, will refute Bankman-Fried’s continued statement in social media and elsewhere that FTX US was a solvent during the collapse of the rest of his empire.
Prosecutors also told Judge Kaplan that testimony from former Alameda detective Caroline Ellison revealed that Bankman-Fried deliberately deleted Slack and Signal messages for work communications because she knew that “many cases involving the law is about documents and it is more difficult to build a case if the information is not written or kept.