a letter filed on Friday night in Manhattan federal court,
Bankman-Fried's lawyer Christian Everdell said both sides
believed they were "close to a resolution", and expect to
formally propose new restrictions by next week.
Bankman-Fried, 31, faces a trial set for Oct. 2 on charges of
stealing billions of dollars in FTX customer funds to plug
losses at his Alameda Research hedge fund, and making large
illegal political donations to buy influence in Washington, D.C.
Bail talks occurred this week after U.S. District Judge Lewis
Kaplan at a March 10 hearing renewed his concerns that Bankman-Fried's
electronic communications with others might exceed the bounds of
his $250 million bail package.
Kaplan's approval is needed to modify Bankman-Fried's bail.
The former billionaire has pleaded not guilty to eight counts,
and not yet been arraigned on four. He is living under house
arrest with his parents in Palo Alto, California.
Prosecutors raised the specter of witness tampering in January
after Bankman-Fried tried to contact John Ray, who became FTX's
chief executive when the company filed for bankruptcy in
November, and an in-house lawyer.
Bankman-Fried's lawyers have said their client was trying to
help, not interfere.
At the March 10 hearing, prosecutors and defense lawyers
proposed giving Bankman-Fried a flip phone with no internet
capability and a basic laptop with limited functions.
That was too generous for Kaplan, who said Bankman-Fried was
"inventive" and could conceivably "find a way around" the
restrictions without being caught.
In Friday's letter, Everdell also sought the judge's permission
to let Bankman-Fried in the meantime use a laptop to access some
Though the laptop would lack monitoring software or restrict
Bankman-Fried's internet access, a lawyer or paralegal would
oversee his use and take the laptop away when Bankman-Fried
finished with it, Everdell said.
The case is U.S. v. Bankman-Fried, U.S. District Court, Southern
District of New York, No. 22-cr-00673.
(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Sonali
[© 2023 Thomson Reuters. All rights
This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Thompson Reuters is solely responsible for this content.