The former CEO of the now-bankrupt exchange FTX, Sam Bankman Fried, can't seem to persuade a judge to grant him any favors.
On Thursday, Lewis A. Kaplan, the judge overseeing his criminal case in the southern district of New York, preempted testimony from seven expert witnesses proposed by Bankman-Fried's lawyers. Kaplan did provide his lawyers the opportunity to refile and let four of those expert witnesses testify-- but only in rebuttal to expert witnesses the Justice Department plans to bring to trial.
The second circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for New York, denied Bankman-Fried's request to be released from jail before and during the trial. a three-judge panel wrote that s additional arguments and find them unpersuasive.
In August, Bankman-Fried's bond was revoked because the Justice Department convicted Kaplan that the former crypto luminary had repeatedly tried to tamper with witnesses before the trial, especially when he leaked documents about Caroline Ellison, former CEO of FTX-linked hedge fund Alameda Research. Bankman-Fried's lawyers have been trying to get him out of one of the most notorious jails in Brooklyn since they were told that the Metropolitan Detention Center's conditions prevent him from properly preparing for his trial.
A spokeswoman for Bankman-Fried's legal team declined to comment on the recent court losses.
Bankman-Fried's legal difficulties come just two weeks before he's to appear in court in one of the most prominent white-collar criminal cases in recent memory.
In December, just a month after FTX declared bankruptcy, the Justice Department indicted Bankman-Fried and some of his key lieutenants for fraud. Attorney General Merrick Garland, 63, said in a statement that he had not spoken with the president.
Since then, Bankman-Fried's other executives have one by one turned against him, accepting plea deals in exchange for presumably providing prosecutors with more ammunition. As of now, Ryan Salame, Gary Wang, Nishad Singh, and Caroline Ellison have all pleaded guilty.
Bankman-Fried has remained in the courtroom, pleading not guilty-first in January, then again in March-to five new charges, and then in August to an amendment-all in anticipation of his October trial date.