HomeTop StoriesFTX founder Bankman-Fried lives on bread and water, says lawyer

FTX founder Bankman-Fried lives on bread and water, says lawyer

Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, lives in prison “on bread and water”, according to his lawyer.

The prison he is being held in prior to his trial will not provide the vegan diet he asked for, his lawyer says.

Last year, Mr. Bankman-Fried was charged with fraud following the bankruptcy of FTX.

At the New York court hearing on Tuesday, Bankman-Fried pleaded not guilty to seven criminal charges included in a new indictment.

The former billionaire’s attorney, Mark Cohen, said a lack of adequate food is hampering his client’s ability to prepare for his trial, which is expected to begin in October.

Mr Cohen also said that Mr Bankman-Fried had not been supplied with the ADHD drug Adderall and that his supply of the depression drug Emsam was running low.

Judge Sarah Netburn said she would ask the US Department of Justice’s Bureau of Prisons, which runs the prison, to address Bankman-Fried’s medication issues.

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She was “reasonably confident” that the facility offered vegetarian food, but wasn’t sure if vegan food was available, Judge Netburn added.

The Bureau of Prisons said in a statement that prisoners had access to “appropriate” healthcare, medicines and hot meals.

Mr Bankman-Fried was led into court with leg cuffs and a beige prison uniform.

It was his first appearance since his bail was revoked on Aug. 11, after U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan found he tampered with witnesses at least twice.

The new indictment charges Mr Bankman-Fried with seven counts of fraud and conspiracy over the collapse of FTX in November 2022.

However, it no longer charges him with conspiracy to violate US campaign finance laws.

He pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Mr. Bankman-Fried has acknowledged that FTX had inadequate risk management, but denied stealing the funds.

FTX was once the second largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world and was valued at $32 billion (£25 billion).

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On November 11, it filed for bankruptcy protection, sending shockwaves through the cryptocurrency market.

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