Report says Sam Bankman-Fried should have been ‘awakened’ by a court official after he closed his eyes during his extradition hearing

  • A court official had to “wake up” the SBF after he closed his eyes during a hearing, according to Reuters.
  • Bankman-Fried appeared in court in Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, on Monday.
  • Bankman-Fried was also admonished for his appearance and behavior during the hearing.

Reuters reports that a court official had to “wake up” Sam Bankman-Fried after he closed his eyes during his extradition hearing.

The co-founder and former CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX was in court in Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, on Monday, where he was expected to agree to extradite eight criminal charges to the United States, including fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering. He had indicated last week to the court that he did not waive his right to challenge his extradition to the United States.

At Monday’s hearing, Bankman-Fried reportedly said he was willing to agree to voluntary extradition, but Jeron Roberts, Bankman-Fried’s attorney in the Bahamas, said he was unaware of the plan, according to Bloomberg.

Roberts said he was “shocked” to see his client in court at all and asked for a break to confer with Bankman Fried in private, The New York Times reported.

Bankman-Fried was returned to Fox Hill Prison after the judge said he could not take action on Bankman-Fried’s extradition without his consent. The Wall Street Journal reported that employees from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the US State Department were present at the hearing.

Roberts later told outlets including The New York Times that the former CEO eventually agreed to hand over. He said Bankman-Fried defied “the strongest possible legal advice” and agreed to extradite voluntarily, according to The Times.

The newspaper reported that at the hearing, a court official told Pinkman-Fried to stand up straight. He also reportedly sat in his seat with his head down while shaking his leg, a well-known trait of the tech mogul.

When asked to stand in court, Bloomberg reported that Bankman-Fried had removed his blue jacket, unbuttoned his shirt, and had his sleeves rolled up. The bailiff also instructed him to keep his hands out of his pockets, according to Bloomberg.

The son of two Stanford law professors, Bankman Fried is known for his mop of curls, casual attire, and behavioral quirks, with The Wall Street Journal’s Jacob Gallagher saying he “embodies Silicon Valley’s shaggy ideal better than anyone.” He’s regularly photographed wearing cargo shorts and baggy T-shirts, sometimes with the FTX logo, and was recently caught playing a video game during an interview.

“He describes himself as a slob, and that makes him more authentic and people like him more,” Michael Pachter told The Journal.

US federal prosecutors charged Bankman-Fried with misappropriation of client funds, including using them to make political contributions, purchase real estate, and pay off loans owed by Alameda Research. They also accused Bankman Fried of defrauding the lenders. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 115 years in prison.

Prior to his arrest, Bankman-Fried had knowingly denied committing fraud in multiple interviews about the FTX crash.

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