Lawyers representing FTX in bankruptcy court have reportedly argued that former CEO Sam Bankman-Friedâs immediate family should face questioning regarding their personal wealth.
According to a Jan. 26 report from Bloomberg, FTXâs lawyers requested Judge John Dorsey in the District of Delaware allow them to question Joseph Bankman, Barbara Fried and Gabriel Bankman-Fried â the father, mother and brother of SBF, respectively â under oath about any financial benefits they may have received from the exchange. Other FTX executives could reportedly be subject to the same line of questioning in an effort to track down assets tied to the bankrupt crypto exchange.
Joseph Bankman, a law professor at Stanford Law School, who canceled at least one of his classes amid the FTX controversy, reportedly acted as a tax adviser to the exchangeâs employees and made recommendations regarding hiring the companyâs legal team. Together with his wife, Barbara Fried â also a professor of law at Stanford â Bankman helped guarantee SBFâs $250-million bail with equity from their California home.
In 2020, Bankman-Friedâs brother, Gabriel, helped found Guarding Against Pandemics, an advocacy group aimed at supporting legislation to prevent future pandemics like COVID-19. Some of SBFâs funds went directly to the group, which supported federal lawmakers, and he and his brother also personally contributed to certain campaigns.
Itâs unclear whether questioning the family members, should Judge Dorsey approve issuing subpoenas, would result in âhiddenâ funds associated with FTX being discovered by investigators. Joseph Bankman has already reportedly hired an attorneyÂ amid his sonâs criminal case, but testimony here would fall under FTXâs bankruptcy proceedings.
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Sam Bankman-Fried faces eight criminal counts, including wire fraud and violations of campaign finance laws. Since his arraignment in the United States upon being extradited from the Bahamas, SBF has largely been confined to his parentsâ home, with his trial scheduled to begin in October.