- Bankman-Fried’s defense wants to emphasize his good-faith intentions and attorney guidance during FTX’s collapse to counter fraud allegations.
- Prosecutors oppose mentioning specific lawyers and question financial data sources.
- Bankman-Fried’s upcoming testimony is critical for his case, as he aims to convince jurors of his good intentions, but prosecutors will challenge his credibility.
Attorneys for FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried are pushing to expand the scope of his highly anticipated trial testimony to include his interactions with legal counsel and good-faith motivations as his empire collapsed.
In filings this week, Bankman-Fried’s lawyers asked the judge to allow questioning around FTX lawyers’ involvement in policies, asset maneuvers, and Bankman-Fried’s rationale during the company’s descent into bankruptcy.
The defense aims to counter prosecution arguments that those actions constituted criminal fraud. They contend Bankman-Fried relied on attorney guidance and tried safeguarding assets in the Bahamas with no ill intent.
However, prosecutors oppose the defense referencing specific FTX lawyers, saying it improperly focuses jurors on irrelevant attorneys. They also pushed back on planned charts detailing Alameda Research’s finances, questioning the undisclosed data sources.
Bankman-Fried’s looming testimony could make or break it
The dueling motions showcase how Bankman-Fried’s looming testimony could prove make-or-break for his case. He hopes to persuade jurors that he acted in good faith and without intent to defraud.
But prosecutors will grill him over allegations that he secretly misused FTX customer funds despite knowing the impropriety. Their witnesses painted him as deceptive and controlling behind the scenes.
While SBF told his story publicly before, retelling it under intense cross-examination could undermine his credibility. Prosecutors will highlight inconsistencies with other testimony.
However, as a last resort to overcome witness accusations, his lawyers know Bankman-Fried must take the stand. Letting others define him almost certainly dooms his case.