Sam Bankman-Fried Appeals Judge’s Decision to Release Names of Bail Co-Signers

  • Back on 30 January, Judge Lewis Kaplan ruled in favor of four separate petitions from major news outlets to release the names of the two co-signers of the $250 million bail bond.
  • SBF, however, continues with his attempts to keep their identities a secret, and his appeal will now prevent the court order from being enforced until 14 February.

Former CEO of FTX Sam Bankman-Fried leaves the Federal Court in New York after pleading not guilty, 3 January, 2022.
lev radin/Shutterstock

Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) is trying to keep the identities of the two individuals who co-signed his $250 million bail bond a secret, court documents filed on 7 February reveale.

Lawyers for Bankman-Fried filed an appeal in court on Tuesday, trying to block a judge’s decision to unseal the names of the two unidentified guarantors who co-signed the $250 million bail bond together with the parrents of SBF. While the appeal did not contain any further arguments against the disclosure of names, it will prevent the court order from being enforced until 14 February.

SBF’s $250 million bail bond was co-signed by his parents — Joseph Bankman and Barbara Fried — and two additional individuals who were not family members on 22 December. SBF’s legal team argued from the start that the two individuals names and personal information should be redacted from the bonds as to keep their privacy and safety.

Judge Lewis Kaplan of the Southern District of New York granted SBF’s request to keep the two individuals information redacted, but also game the media until 12 January to object to his decision. Several news organizations made use of this and filed a petition arguing that the public had the right to know who was providing SBF with financial backing.

During a hearing on 30 January, Judge Kaplan ruled in favor of four separate petitions by a number of news organizations, noting that SBF’s argument to keep their identities hidden lacked merit given the size of their individual bonds was much smaller than his parents, at $200,000 and $500,000. The judge also argued that the guarantors had voluntarily signed bonds in a “highly publicized criminal proceeding”, opening themselves to public scrutiny.

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