Denied: SBF Last-Minute Bid For Delay Thwarted By Judge Ahead Of Sentencing Interview


Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, or commonly SBF, had asked Judge Lewis Kaplan to postpone his sentence hearing for four to six weeks, but the judge dismissed his request.

Attorneys for Bankman-Fried’s defense said that more time is required to gather evidence for the sentencing submission and to be ready for the pre-sentencing interview, which is set for December 21.

Attorney Mark Cohen of Cohen & Gresser submitted a letter on December 20th, requesting a postponement of the sentencing hearing slated for March 28, 2024, and his presentencing interview scheduled for Thursday, December 21st.

SBF: Delaying Tactics

Bankman-Fried’s legal counsels also sought to take advantage of the additional time to get ready for any charges that might be dropped from the first trial; a retrial is set for March 11. The attorneys proposed January 5, 2024, and February 2, 2024, as the scheduled dates for disclosures related to the presentence investigation report.

Letter requesting adjournment in Bankman-Fried's sentencing. Source: Court Listener

Cohen stated that the defense has not heard back from the government despite reaching out to them to request their consent. He also pointed out that this was the first attempt of SBF to have the hearing postponed.

No More Extension, Judge Says

Kaplan forbade alterations to the timetable, and noted that Bankman-Fried had already been granted one extension to file his sentencing statements, and the defense had not objected to the date of sentencing when it was established.

During the second trial, the prosecution alleged that Bankman-Fried participated in an unlawful campaign financing conspiracy by donating around $100 million to politicians. Following the Bahamas’ refusal to extradite Bankman-Fried on the charge, the government subsequently dropped the charges.

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On the other hand, Bankman-Fried’s attorneys contended that sentence ought to start as soon as the withdrawn counts are settled. Cohen proposed that it would be just and efficient to combine all relevant conduct into a single sentence hearing if the trial on the separated counts takes place on March 11.

Nov. 2 saw the conviction of Bankman-Fried on all counts pertaining to fraud and other offenses at FTX and Alameda Research, a sister company.

Not Guilty Plea

Following his not guilty plea to all charges and his insistence on his innocence following the jury’s ruling, Bankman-Fried made an effort to disassociate himself from important choices, attributing various functions and risk management errors to other executives.

Even though the former FTX CEO might receive a maximum sentence of 110 years in prison, many legal experts predict a much lower term. According to certain calculations, he might spend less time behind bars than 25 years.

Damian Williams, the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, called the offenses made by SBF “a multibillion-dollar scheme aimed to make him the king of crypto” and considered them to be among the largest financial scams in American history.

Other significant FTX officials entered guilty pleas to a number of crimes and testified against SBF throughout the trial. These executives included former Alameda CEO Caroline Ellison, FTX co-founder Gary Wang, and former FTX engineering chief Nishad Singh.

Featured image from Pixabay

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