Bankman-Fried Banned From Using VPN That He Was Using For Watching Football
- Sam Bankman-Fried said he used a VPN to watch the Super Bowl while under house arrest, so a judge forbade him from using one.
- The VPN prohibition was enforced by US District Judge Lewis Kaplan until Thursday when he will convene a hearing to discuss adding further conditions to Bankman-Fried’s bail terms.
- Earlier, the court had voiced worry over his potential communication with both witnesses and other parties.
When Sam Bankman-Fried was released on bond, the judge forbade him from using VPNs because of worry that they pose the same hazards as the co-founder of FTX’s usage of encrypted messaging applications.
Private networks, which conceal a user’s IP address, were added on Tuesday to the list of technology Bankman-Fried is prohibited from employing by US District Judge Lewis Kaplan. Federal prosecutors said they had learned Bankman-Fried had utilized VPNs on two recent instances in a letter to Kaplan that was sent late Monday night.
“The defendant’s use of a VPN presents many of the same risks associated with his use of an encrypted messaging or call application. I hereby amend the conditions of the defendant’s release, effective immediately, to prohibit the defendant’s use of any VPN,” Judge Lewis Kaplan wrote.
The government said that VPNs might be used to access global cryptocurrency exchanges, permit data transfers without being noticed, and provide a covert way to access the dark web.
After the crypto exchange failed, Bankman-Fried, who was accused of fraud, claimed he had just used a VPN to watch football.
The AFC and NFC football championship games on January 29, as well as the Super Bowl on Sunday, were all seen by Bankman-Fried, according to his attorneys, who claimed this on Tuesday. While residing in the Bahamas, Bankman-Fried purchased an NFL Game Pass worldwide membership, which he used to watch the games. He has volunteered to abstain from using the private network until the terms of his bail are determined.
Earlier, Kaplan had voiced worry that Bankman-Fried would speak with witnesses and other participants. Following allegations that Bankman-Fried had contacted a prospective witness in his criminal case, the judge recently banned him from using encrypted messaging services like Signal. Furthermore, until his bail terms are satisfied, Bankman-Fried is not permitted to speak with any current or former FTX workers.
The judge rejected a request from attorneys to extend the deadline for fresh bail terms until Friday. According to Kaplan’s ruling, the court will hear arguments on Bankman-Fried’s bail restrictions Thursday after receiving submissions by Wednesday.
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