SBF’s bail bond co-signers may soon be named SBF’s bail bond co-signers may soon be named

SBF’s bail bond co-signers may soon be named

Two individuals who acted as sureties could be named in one or two weeks.

SBF’s bail bond co-signers may soon be named

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate


CoinDesk Consensus

The judge overseeing Sam Bankman-Fried’s criminal case has decided that the names of two bail bond signers can be revealed, as determined in a Jan. 30 filing.

Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX, was briefly detained in the U.S. following his extradition from the Bahamas on Dec. 21. When he was released on bail on Dec. 22, his parents signed a $250 million bail bond backed by their California home.

However, the bail process also involved two other smaller bonds amounting to $500,000 and $200,000. Those bonds were co-signed by two individuals acting as sureties — including at least one individual who is not a family member of Bankman-Fried.

Later, on Jan. 3, Bankman-Fried and his legal team asked for the names of those sureties to be redacted for the sake of the individuals’ safety and privacy.

Now, federal judge Lewis Kaplan has decided that the names of the two sureties can be unsealed at the request of various news organizations. “In my view, the individual bonds should be on the public record,” Kaplan said in today’s court filing.

Kaplan gave several reasons for his decision. First, he noted that the identities of the sureties did not play a direct role in Bankman-Fried’s release. The bonds were not signed until after the bail and the sureties’ names were unknown to the magistrate judge who authorized Bankman-Fried’s release. Kaplan reasoned that public knowledge of the sureties’ names will not impact future legal proceedings or law enforcement.

Kaplan also argued that releasing the sureties’ names will not be detrimental to the safety and privacy of the individuals (apart from attracting publicity). He further noted that bonds signed by sureties are traditionally publicized with the names of the signers.

Though the names of the two bail bond signers may soon be released, this will not occur until Feb. 7 or Feb. 14, depending on whether Bankman-Fried’s team appeals the decision. If that appeal is successful, the names may remain private.

The eventual release of the names will undoubtedly attract attention due to the large number of individuals involved in FTX’s collapse and the level of conspiracy alleged.

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