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FTX Founder’s Trial Nears Climax With Intricate Legal Battles

Closing arguments set for tomorrow as Sam Bankman-Fried defends against misappropriation charges in high-profile digital asset case.

As the pivotal trial of FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried nears its climax, the courtroom prepares for closing arguments tomorrow, even as the fourth day saw intricate legal battles and revelations, setting the stage for a dramatic conclusion in this high-profile digital asset case.

A display of the representation of Bitcoin. Sam Bankman-Fried took the stand in the trial against him for three days. (JONATHAN BORBA/UNSPLASHED) 

The day began with his attorney Mark Cohen navigating the intricate legal landscape surrounding the litigation in Antigua, Inner City Press reported.

At the heart of the matter was an affirmation made by Bankman-Fried, where he clarified his stance on the control of certain shares.

Contrary to some perceptions, he stated that he never intended to assert control.

Instead, he explained that his primary intent was to return the shares to bankruptcy, a move that was guided by legal advice.

However, the trial’s spotlight shifted momentarily to a correspondence between Bankman-Fried and Bahamas Attorney General, Ryan Pinder.

This interaction became a focal point when Cohen presented a message from Bankman-Fried which read, “It’s your call.”

In his defense, Bankman-Fried elucidated that he perceived Pinder’s communication as an indication for him to allow Bahamians to withdraw their assets. 

In an interesting parallel, the trial’s unfolding comes just ahead of Benzinga’s Future of Digital Assets conference on Nov. 14. This event is set to gather industry leaders to deliberate on the trajectory of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.

The subsequent discussions centered around exhibits, and in particular, the characterization of the charges against Bankman-Fried.

The term “misappropriating” became a bone of contention, leading to a series of exchanges that only intensified the courtroom drama.

Stephen Dick, serving as Bankman-Fried’s legal counsel, found himself at odds with Judge Lewis Kaplan on multiple occasions.

Their dialogues ranged from the timeliness and content of legal submissions to interpreting foreign laws.

Judge Kaplan, known for his meticulous nature, did not shy away from expressing his concerns, urging Dick to provide more specific and punctual documentation.

This session was marked by citations and counter-citations, leading to a temporary standstill in the charge conference.

As the proceedings drew to a close, Judge Kaplan announced the schedule for the next pivotal moment: the closing arguments.

Set to commence at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, both sides will present their final appeals, summarizing weeks of testimonies, evidence, and legal maneuvers.

Bankman-Fried took the stand in during the three days using phrases that included the following: “Yep,” “I don’t recall,” “I may have,” “I don’t remember,” “Sounds plausible,” “I’m not sure,” “Possibly,” and “Sounds right.”

Under the questioning from his own legal counsel, Bankman-Fried was painting himself as overachiever and an overworked individual. 


Produced in association with Benzinga

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