Aug 30, 2023

The Department of Justice said in a filing that all of Sam Bankman-Fried's proposed witnesses should be disqualified from testifying.

Video transcript

The Department of Justice said in a late Monday filing that all of FTX founders, Sam Bank feeds proposed witnesses should be just disqualified from testifying. Joining us to discuss this is coin global policy and regulation. Managing editor Nick who is also of Coin state of crypto newsletter. Good morning, Nick. Hey, good morning. Um Yeah, welcome to the show. Exactly what I was gonna say because while you were sleeping, I don't know how many filings have come. Several, many, many filing. Um Yeah. No. So the money filings are pretty straightforward, right? There's some procedural things that the two parties are going through. One of those is uh earlier this month. They announced too. They wanted to, you know, call as witnesses and as expert witnesses on Monday, there was a deadline for the parties to say that they don't want the other side to call certain witnesses what are called, do uh do motions. I'm not sure how the pronunciation. Um Basically the DOJ says that all seven of Sam Baman Fried's proposed witnesses should be disqualified and barred from testifying for various reasons ranging from uh they have no idea what the witnesses are planning to say because their disclosures were inadequate or didn't have information uh to saying that they're, you know, not talking about relevant topics. Uh Some of these witnesses plan to talk about, you know, explain what blockchains do and how cryptocurrencies work. Uh There was a witness who wanted to explain how crypto lending programs work. Um You know, you have witnesses who are uh in theory experts on certain issues. Uh They did, they moved to disqualify one witness because they believe that he is not an expert on anything crypto. Uh So just a, you know, a wide range of reasons why they say, OK, all seven of these witnesses should be, you know, prevented from testifying on the other side. The uh Sarid's team said that they want to prevent one of the uh doj witnesses from testifying uh saying that, you know, he would be improperly instructing the jury on the law. And basically, you know, just he wasn't really adding anything new. He was just really litigating the Do J's existing complaint, Nick is this procedural? Is this just part of the strategy here for the DOJ to say, look, these witnesses are not relevant to this case or is this indicative of a group of um I guess an ideal witnesses? Um It does seem like this is just a procedural thing. Uh You know, the DOJ had proposed a number of witnesses. Sarid's team only is moving to block one. Sam M Fried's team appears to have only proposed those seven extra witnesses and, uh, you know, the motion to try and exclude them. That's a procedural thing. I'm not sure if it's unusual that they're moving to disqualify all of them. But, um, you know, again, they had a, you know, a lengthy filing 45 pages or so, uh, basically walking through each witness and saying, ok, here's why this person should not be, uh, you know, allowed to testify. You know, in a letter to the judge, the defense says it is unable to adequately prepare for trial and prepare the defense, which is a violation of SPF six amendment rights. Uh, is that something that one could read as them, basically saying, well, if you're going to go down the road that the prosecution is proposing, then we can't really make a defense. Yeah. So this is, uh, basically an argument that the defense has been making since Sam Reed's, uh, bail was revoked earlier this month, right? Um, you know, in a couple of filings now they've said that, you know, before he was detained, Beri had been putting quote 80 to 100 hours per week into preparing his defense. Now, that's limited severely in, you know, various ways because a, he doesn't have the same kind of computer access he used to have, he doesn't have the same kind of access to his lawyers. He used to have, he is unable to continue working on this, you know, electronic database that he's been building a spreadsheet, um which honestly sounds like a Google sheet document that, you know, was containing information for the defense project. Uh Defense seemed to work on. Um So they've been making this argument since he was detained. There will be a hearing on that today actually in uh it's about 9:41 a.m. Eastern right now. This is going to be at 1 p.m. eastern, 1:30 p.m. Eastern. I believe so. Uh, in just a few short hours, you know, we will hear argument about this in court, but it's an argument that the defense has made for two weeks or 2, 2.5 weeks. Now, basically saying, you know, be fried has a right to a defense that's part of his sixth amendment rights and because he's now in jail and not out, you know, in his parents' place, he is unable to adequately work on it. All right, Nick, thanks for joining us this morning. We'll see you tomorrow. Sounds good. That was Coindesk global policy and regulation. Managing editor Nick Day. Don't forget to sign up for the state of crypto newsletter on coindesk dot com.

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