SBF’s Extensive Requests: Appeals Sentence, Demands California Jail Near Family

April 12, 2024

In a legal saga that continues to stun the cryptocurrency industry, the financial realm, and even the world, Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder and former CEO of the then-crypto behemoth FTX, once again filed an appeal for the court’s earlier sentence. Amid the appeal of a stringent 25-year sentence, the demands of the once dubbed “golden boy of crypto” extend beyond the courtroom, advocating for a specific placement in a California jail, strategically chosen to maintain proximity to cherished family ties. 

During Bankman-Fried’s sentencing hearing on March 28, defense lawyer Marc Mukasey revealed plans for an appeal to the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Facing the potential of a lengthy prison term and spending it with other convicted individuals, the 32-year-old former billionaire lodged appeals against both his conviction and the 25-year sentence.

Aside from that, his lawyers also highlighted on the appeal that Bankman-Fried should serve his sentence near his family’s home in California. SBF, as he is more popularly known in the crypto space, is the firstborn son of renowned Stanford scholars Barbara Fried and Joseph Bankman. His parents pledged their California home as security for their son’s release in December after a New York judge decided to set his bail at a staggering quarter billion dollars.

“Defendant Sam Bankman-Fried was sentenced on March 28, 2024, primarily to 25 years imprisonment, to be served, if possible, near his family’s home in California. (ECF 424),” the appeal read.

In addition to these requests, Bankman-Fried’s defense team also petitioned the court to permit him to stay at his current detention facility, the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, to facilitate his access to his legal representatives while waiting to submit their legal arguments and pending the court of appeal’s decision.

“Мг. Bankman-Fried respectfully requests, pursuant to Rule 38(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, that the Court supplement its recommendation to the Bureau of Prisons (‘BOP’) by issuing the attached proposed order recommending that the BOP allow him to remain at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn to facilitate access to his appellate counsel pending the filing of the briefs in his anticipated appeal,” Bankman-Fried’s lawyers said in the appeal.

Furthermore, Bankman-Fried’s appeal disclosed that the government has chosen to maintain a neutral position regarding SBF’s request. SBF’s lawyers shared that the government has informed them that they take no position on the request, refraining from expressing either support or opposition.

Adrian Mendoza, Managing Partner at Lillig & Thorsness, Ltd. expressed his opinion on Bankman-Fried’s 25-year prison sentence. “Twenty-five years is a long time as SBF is going to learn. He is about to lose the prime years of his life. I followed the trial closely, and when I hear people say that he made mistakes in his altruistic investing strategies I disagree. This was outright fraud; deliberate and intentional.”

The lawyer who specializes in the areas of complex civil and commercial litigation added, “For such an intelligent and well-educated young man he seemingly lacked a vital characteristic – integrity. For him, the end justified the means.” He further noted, “Young entrepreneurs and professionals need to understand that a career is a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t cut corners and jeopardize your livelihood and potentially your freedom.”

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