EXCLUSIVE: Sam Bankman-Fried’s Stanford professor parents get special treatment as they rush to Bahamas jail carrying bags from upscale Fresh Market for their disgraced son – after he claimed his vegan diet should be enough to grant him bail
- Sam Bankman-Fried, 30, was remanded in custody in the Bahamas’ only prison on Tuesday as he fights extradition to the US on wire and securities fraud charges
- DailyMail.com saw parents Barbara Fried and Joseph Bankman visiting him at notorious Fox Hill jail in Nassau on Thursday
- Barbara, 71, was seen carrying a bag from upscale store The Fresh Market as she got out of the couple’s silver Honda Civic; Joseph, 67, who was wearing a charcoal suit, white shirt and blue tie, clutched a laptop
- SBF had argued that he should be granted a $250,000 bail and house arrest because of his veganism, depression and dependence on medication
The law professor parents of disgraced crypto tycoon Sam Bankman-Fried arrived at his Bahamas prison today – appearing to bring supplies for the vegan diet he claimed as a reason why he should be released on bail.
Mom Barbara Fried, 71, was spotted carrying a bag from upscale store The Fresh Market as she got out of the a silver Honda Civic after they drove through the main gates of notorious Fox Hill jail in the capital Nassau.
Stanford professor Joseph Bankman, 67 – who was wearing a smart charcoal suit, white shirt and blue tie – clutched a laptop computer.
The couple checked into the main guard house before carrying on inside the sprawling compound run by the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services, where their son has so far spent two nights.
Their vehicular access through the main gates was in contrast to family of other inmates leaving items, who are made to line up in a fenced off walkway at a different entrance before going through a security check.
DailyMail.com spotted Sam Bankman-Fried’s parents Barbara Fried and Joseph Bankman visiting him in notorious Fox Hill jail in Nassau on Thursday
The couple checked into the main guard house before carrying on inside the sprawling compound run by the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services
Bankman-Fried was remanded in custody in the Bahamas’ only prison on Tuesday as he fights extradition to the US on wire and securities fraud charges
Barbara, who lectures at Stanford, was wearing a black sleeveless shirt, oatmeal pants and was carrying a black backpack along with what appeared to be groceries
Barbara, 71, was spotted carrying a bag from store The Fresh Market, perhaps for her son’s vegan diet
His father Joseph, 67, was wearing a charcoal suit, white shirt and blue tie
Joseph’s son faces eight charges and is accused on ‘one of the biggest financial frauds in American history’ by allegedly conning investors out of $1.8billion
It is not known whether Bankman-Fried’s parents visited him in the maximum security section sickbay where he is currently held with five other inmates – or were just dropping off supplies
The parents’ prison visit came hours after DailyMail.com exclusively revealed the financial world’s former golden child could be released this week if an expected emergency bail application is lodged with the Supreme Court in Nassau
New prisoners in the rat-infested lock-up – officially called His Majesty’s Prison Fox Hill – are typically not allowed visitors for two weeks after their admission, while they are being assessed and are kept more isolated due to continuing Covid restrictions.
It is not known whether Bankman-Fried’s parents visited him in the maximum security section sickbay where he is currently held with five other inmates – or were just dropping off supplies.
Barbara, who also lectures at Stanford, was wearing a black sleeveless shirt, oatmeal pants and was carrying a black backpack along with what appeared to be groceries.
They were supporting their 30-year-old son in Magistrates Court on Tuesday while his local lawyer Jerome Roberts argued the fallen moneyman should get bail because he is a vegan, suffers depression and is dependent on medication.
However Chief Magistrate Joyanne Ferguson-Pratt threw out the plea for $250,000 bail and house arrest. Instead she ordered the co-founder of collapsed currency exchange FTX to be held at Fox Hill until February 8.
Bankman-Fried – who was feted by celebrities including NFL legend Tom Brady and who shared a stage with ex-president Bill Clinton – was arrested the night before at his $40million penthouse in the exclusive community of The Albany.
He faces eight charges and is accused on ‘one of the biggest financial frauds in American history’ for allegedly conning investors out of $1.8billion.
They include wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy and conspiracy to commit money laundering. Each carries a maximum prison term of 20 years, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, where they were filed.
The parents’ visit came hours after DailyMail.com exclusively revealed the financial world’s former golden child could be released this week if an expected emergency bail application is lodged with the Supreme Court in the island chain’s capital, Nassau.
Staff at the court have been told to be on alert for the paperwork, we have been told.
A Supreme Court source said Bankman-Fried, whose $32billion empire imploded overnight, could stand a good chance of bail because of his medical conditions.
‘There hasn’t been any paperwork filed yet, but we’ve all been told to keep looking out for it,’ the source said.
‘This could happen at any time. We’re definitely expecting it this week.’
The source explained: ‘If you have a medical condition, which I know this gentleman does, you can apply for an urgent bail application.
‘You must have the correct proof in paperwork to be considered for it. But it can be a very straightforward process. It also applies if you are pregnant, elderly or there is no objection by The Crown.
‘Bankman-Fried might have to attend the hearing, or he could join it via video link. Either way, if the judge is satisfied that he meets the medical criteria then he could free him on the spot under bail conditions.’
Sam Bankman-Fried is pictured leaving court Tuesday after being denied bail. A Supreme Court source said Bankman-Fried, whose $32billion empire imploded overnight, could stand a good chance of bail because of his medical conditions
The prison where SBF is being held is notorious for chronic overcrowding as well as rodent and maggot infestations
A 2021 Amnesty International study found that prisoners in Fox Hill did not have access to bathrooms and were forced to slop out
One section of the study reads: ‘Many cells also lacked running water, and in those cells, inmates removed human waste by bucket’
During Tuesday’s marathon court hearing, it was revealed that SBF, as he likes to be known, takes medication for depression and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
DailyMail.com has also revealed a female senior US Embassy representative spent 90 minutes at the jail Wednesday morning after arriving in a black Chevrolet Tahoe with diplomatic license plates.
The vehicle was let through the first set of imposing sliding gates at the complex – which then closed before the diplomat got out and headed to the guard station carrying a manila envelope.
She then returned to the SUV, which drove swiftly into the main compound after the corresponding second set of sliding gates were opened.
The official was later seen back at the embassy in downtown Nassau, still clutching the paperwork.
Bankman-Fried does not have to wear the jail uniform of a rough shirt and pants or shorts, with broad horizontal blue stripes, we have been told.
But he is not receiving any preferential treatment either, according to the Bahamas acting Commissioner of Corrections Doan Cleare.
‘Mr. Fried is receiving no special treatment than any other inmate,’ she told local outlet Eyewitness News in Nassau on Wednesday.
‘It’s a shock to any inmate to come from home into a dormitory-style or cell-style environment but I saw him, I spoke to him last night and he seemed to be in good spirits,’
‘He’s along with five other inmates in sickbay currently. He has to make the best of it. He’s in maximum security sickbay.
‘He’s being assessed by our doctors and upon completion of the assessment the doctor will advise me what steps to go forward with. He has some conditions and once the assessment is complete we will see how it goes.’
Of Bankman-Fried’s vegan diet, Cleare said: ‘We do our best to acquire the various food that is necessary for a vegan diet.
‘Now in this case he is under severe strict diet… only the prison doctor can determine a dietary plan for an inmate.’
A senior US Embassy representative arrived in a black Chevy Tahoe on Wednesday morning and spent 90 minutes at the rat-infested lock-up
The US diplomat was later seen back at the embassy in downtown Nassau, still clutching the paperwork
The jail is split into low, medium and high-security areas. When DailyMail.com was outside on Wednesday we witnessed bustling activity, with several work gangs busy on maintenance. We also saw prisoners playing basketball.
However, condemnation of conditions in Fox Hill has been made in various reports.
The facility was designed to hold 1,200 inmates but regularly accommodates around twice that number.
A US State Department study found that Fox Hill was infested with vermin. And inmates were only allowed out of their cells for 30 minutes a week due to staff shortages.
One section of the study reads: ‘Many cells also lacked running water, and in those cells, inmates removed human waste by bucket.’
It continued: ‘Sanitation was a general problem, with cells infested with rats, maggots and insects. Ventilation was also a general problem. Prisoners in maximum security had access to sanitary facilities only one hour a day and used slop buckets as toilets.’
Another section said: ‘Prison inmates complained about the lack of beds and bedding. As a result, inmates developed bedsores from lying on the bare ground.’
A study done years previously described the prison as ‘harsh’ and ‘primitive’. There are a total of seven housing units in the prison, including maximum security, female and central intake.
U.S. attorney Damian Williams warned that more charges would be pending against others. ‘We are not done,’ he said
A 2021 Amnesty International study found prisoners did not have access to bathrooms and were forced to slop out. Suicides are common as mental health care for inmates is ‘virtually non-existent’, added the report.
The study said: ‘There have been repeated, unconfirmed, serious allegations of sexual abuse and rape which do not appear to have been adequately investigated by the authorities.’
SBF ‘orchestrated a years-long fraud’ by diverting money to his Alameda Research ‘privately held crypto hedge fund’ and concealing that from investors, according a separate complaint filed against him by The Securities and Exchange Commission.
‘We allege that Sam Bankman-Fried built a house of cards on a foundation of deception while telling investors that it was one of the safest buildings in crypto,’ said SEC Chair Gary Gensler.
‘The alleged fraud committed by Mr. Bankman-Fried is a clarion call to crypto platforms that they need to come into compliance with our law.’
Gurbir Grewal, Director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement said FTX ‘operated under a veneer of legitimacy’ and added ‘as we alleged in out complaint, that veneer was just thin, it was fraudulent.’
Source: Read Full Article