Sam Bankman-Fried’s legal counsel has moved to have ten criminal charges dismissed in court.
Court documents filed in the southern district court of New York on May 8 show that Bankman-Fried’s legal team submitted motions to dismiss every charge except for conspiracy to commit commodities fraud, conspiracy to commit securities fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
The attorneys argued that the U.S. government brought its original indictment against the FTX founder “in a classic rush to judgement” on the backdrop of a tumultuous crypto winter that saw many crypto firms, including FTX, file for bankruptcy. They further claimed that additional charges against Bankman-Fried in a superseding indictment violate the extradition treaty with the Bahamas.
One of the arguments for dismissing the charges laid out in the filing is a claim that the team overseeing FTX’s bankruptcy proceedings has become part of the prosecution. The lawyers alleged that the U.S. government has “effectively deputized” FTX’s current CEO John Ray III and his team, who have acted on behalf of the prosecutors to synthesize evidence.
Bankman-Fried’s attorneys argued that the premise for the fraud, conspiracy and wire fraud charges, is an invalid property interest that cannot be used as the basis for an offense. According to them, the campaign finance allegations against him should also be dismissed because they lack the facts to back them up.
“Mr. Bankman-Fried has been forced to make assumptions about the events purportedly underlying the charges against him and attempt to investigate these allegations blindly,” stated the lawyers.
Other members of the FTX founders so-called inner circle have all pleaded guilty to the charges against them and are cooperating with the prosecution’s investigation.
U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan is scheduled to hear arguments on the dismissal requests on June 15 and the prosecutors will need to submit a response by May 29.