Sam Bankman-Fried's Bahamas Court Appearance Adds to Confusion

Counsel for Sam Bankman-Fried appeared blindsided by Sam Bankman-Fried's decision to appear in a Bahamas court today.

Weekend reports suggested Bankman-Fried had changed his mind and was not going to challenge extradition to the U.S., where he faces a host of criminal charges relating to misuse of customer funds and misleading of investors from the Department of Justice, Securities and Exchange Commission and Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Eyewitness News in Bahamas reported that Bankman-Fried attorney Jerome Roberts told judge Shaka Serville he was unaware until minutes prior to the hearing that there would be a court appearance today. He reportedly called this morning's proceedings "shocking" and "premature."

Reuters, meanwhile, reported that Bankman-Fried's counsel requested to see the U.S. indictment against the former FTX CEO prior to agreeing to waive an extradition challenge – a curious request given the indictment has been public for nearly one week.

Bankman-Fried's extradition trial had been set for Feb. 8, 2023. He will also try again for bail in a hearing on Jan. 17, 2023.