Sam “SBF” Bankman-Fried’s two multimillion-dollar luxury jets are now subject to forfeiture, according to a filing from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) on Oct. 4.
The document says that the possibility of forfeiture comes as a result of the “offenses described in Counts One through Four and Seven of Indictment 22 Cr. 673 (LAK)” which were brought against SBF.
The jets listed included a Bombardier Global and an Embraer Legacy aircraft. These two aircraft are currently at the heart of an ownership debacle between the government, SBF’s former cryptocurrency exchange FTX and the aviation companies operating the jets Island Air Capital (IAC), according to documents filed on Sept. 21 with the Delaware Bankruptcy Court.
In the arguments the government has said both aircraft are subject to forfeiture due to being purchased with fraudulent funds, while FTX says the loans used to purchase the jets were not documented.
In December 2022, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) filed a lawsuit against SBF, FTX and Alameda Research accusing the latter parties of being in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act. Accusations against SBF from the CFTC included “used FTX customer funds for a variety of personal expenditures” – one of which was the private jets.
This filing comes as Bankman-Fried currently sits on trial for criminal and fraud charges related to the fall of FTX in November 2022. SBF has pleaded not guilty to all charges and is being heard by Judge Lewis Kaplan.
The trial began on Oct. 3 with a selection of the jury and opening arguments from both the prosecution and the defense were heard the following day on Oct. 4.
The DOJ’s opening stance portrayed Bankman-Fried as deliberately deceiving customers and investors to get rich and expand his operations, while the defense argued for SBF as simply a young entrepreneur whose business plans “didn’t work out.”
The trial continues its proceedings on Oct.5. Cointelegraph is on the ground in New York with the latest updates on the trial. Follow live updates here.