Sam Bankman-Fried’s Parents Aren’t Cooperating Enough in FTX Probe, Says Lawyer

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 3 min read
Sam Bankman-Fried’s Parents Aren’t Cooperating Enough in FTX Probe, Says Lawyer
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The attorneys said that FTX’s family members haven’t cooperated with requests of questioning regarding the use of funds at the exchange.

In a legal filing submitted this Wednesday, lawyers representing FTX in the bankruptcy court stated that Sam Bankman-Fried’s immediate family isn’t cooperating enough during the probe of FTX. The lawyers said that the family members should be cooperating in the questioning regarding their personal wealth.

The legal filing submitted by FTX and creditor representatives noted:

“The Debtors and their advisors have been working tirelessly and nonstop over the last 70 plus days … to implement controls, recover and protect estate assets. Key questions remain, however, concerning numerous aspects of the Debtors’ finances and transactions”.

During Wednesday’s hearing, the lawyers requested Judge John Dorsey in the District of Delaware in order to allow them to question Joseph Bankman, Barbara Fried, and Gabriel Bankman-Fried — the father, mother, and brother of SBF, respectively. In order to track down the assets tied to the bankrupt crypto exchange, other executives might face similar questioning.

The lawyers want to know who received potentially stolen funds from FTX and the communications they had with its executives. However, the lawyers alleged that some potential witnesses aren’t cooperating enough despite requests.

The Involvement of SBF’s Parents and Their Participation in FTX Probe

SBF’s father Joseph Bankman, who also served as a professor at the Standford Law School, acted as a tax adviser to FTX’s employees and also made recommendations on hiring the legal team. Along with his wife Barbara Bankman, Joseph has helped guarantee the $250 million bail against the equity of the California home. In the filing, the lawyers noted that discussions with Joseph Bankman are “ongoing” and shall likely lead to a consensual outcome.

The attorneys further added that SBF’s mother Barbara Fried, “has ignored the requests altogether,” and has also received no meaningful engagement from Mr. Gabriel Bankman-Fried. Barbara Bankman-Fried’s political action committee, Mind the Gap, has allegedly received donations from SBF and other FTX staffers. The filing adds: both parents “resided in a $16.4 million [Bahamas] house titled in their names, despite understanding that the house was ‘intended to be the company’s property’”.

In the bankruptcy proceedings, the lawyers said Gabriel’s lobbying organization Guarding Against Pandemics, “purchased a multimillion-dollar property a few blocks from the United States Capital [sic], which the debtors believe was purchased using misappropriated customer funds.”

In the filing, the attorneys stated that the court should subpoena Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX executives Gary Wang and Caroline Ellison. The request will be entertained next week on February 8 hearing in the US bankruptcy court in Delaware.

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