Sam Bankman-Fried Released On $250 Million Bond—But He Only Put Up A Fraction Of That


FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried was released from federal custody Thursday after his attorneys struck a deal with prosecutors on a bail amount of $250 million, as the former cryptocurrency titan awaits federal criminal proceedings, but he effectively posted none of his own money as part of the plea agreement despite the astronomical figure.

Key Facts

Bankman-Fried was released on a personal recognizance bond, requiring his parents to put up equity on their Stanford, California, home, which had an assessed value this year of just under $1.8 million.

The agreement required the signatures of his parents and two other people with “considerable” assets—in return, he was able to avoid posting the remaining portion of the $250 million unless he misses his next court appearance, set for January 3.

Bankman-Fried was ordered to remain at his parents’ home under “strict” supervision until the time of his trial, which includes wearing an electronic ankle monitor, and he is not allowed to open new lines of credit over $1,000.

He will enter a plea on the charges—including wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and campaign finance violations—at a later date, though he has denied criminal wrongdoing in recent media interviews.

Surprising Fact

Bankman-Fried consistently claimed in media interviews following the collapse of FTX last month that the only remaining asset he was aware of was a bank account with $100,000 in it.

Key Background

Bankman-Fried, 30, was extradited to the U.S. from the Bahamas on Wednesday night following several days of confusion over his extradition status after he was taken into custody last week. FTX filed for bankruptcy last month after the company lost billions of dollars in a failed effort to prop up a sister trading firm, Alameda Research, which was headed by 28-year-old Caroline Ellison, who had been romantically involved with Bankman-Fried. Ellison and former FTX executive Gary Wang both pleaded guilty to fraud charges relating to FTX’s collapse and are cooperating with prosecutors on Bankman-Fried’s case, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said Wednesday night.

Forbes Valuation

Forbes estimates Bankman-Fried’s net worth peaked at $26.5 billion prior to the collapse of FTX.

Further Reading

FTX And Alameda Executives Plead Guilty To Fraud As Sam Bankman-Fried Is Extradited To U.S. (Forbes)

‘I Didn’t Ever Try To Commit Fraud’: Sam Bankman-Fried Responds To FTX Collapse In New Interview (Forbes)

Sam Bankman-Fried Agrees To U.S. Extradition After Chaotic Day In Bahamas Court (Forbes)

Meet Caroline Ellison, The ‘Fake Charity Nerd Girl’ Behind The FTX Collapse (Forbes)