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Sam Bankman-Fried's mom suggests he's too autistic for prison in bid to spare him from accountability
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Sam Bankman-Fried's mom suggests he's too autistic for prison in bid to spare him from accountability

A U.S. District Court in Manhattan will hand down a sentence on March 28 for convicted fraudster Sam Bankman-Fried. While the Democratic mega-donor faces up to 110 years behind bars, Stanford Law professor Barbara Fried told the court in a filing Tuesday that her fraudster son is too delicate for prison.

Barbara Fried — sued in September along with her husband, Joseph Bankman, for allegedly enriching herself with money that her son stole from customers — painted Sam Bankman-Fried as a misunderstood autist in a bid to have him serve no more than 6.5 years.

A federal jury determined in October that Sam Bankman-Fried stole $8 billion from FTX customers to blow largely on Democratic candidates, leftist causes, real estate purchases, investments in other companies, and other pet causes. He also reportedly gave his parents tens of millions of dollars and gifted them a $16.4 million property in the Bahamas.

Bankman-Fried was ultimately convicted of two counts of wire fraud conspiracy; two counts of wire fraud; one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering; conspiracy to commit commodities fraud; and conspiracy to commit securities fraud.

In the filing, Barbara Fried, a liberal who ran a donor network for Democratic candidates, suggested her 32-year-old son is a victim of public ridicule now that his "eccentricities" are no longer charming now that he's a poor criminal, reported the New York Post.

"The broader public was charmed by many of his eccentricities — or at least pretended to be — while he was on top of the world. The moment he fell, the same public became merciless, ridiculing his awkward traits and verbal style, taking them as a sign of duplicity or worse, and portraying him as a freak with evil intentions," wrote Fried.

"The media's weapon of choice is words," continued the fraudster's wealthy mother. "The same cannot be said for prisons."

Fried insinuated that her Adderall-dependent son has some form of autism, which might make life difficult for him in the slammer.

"[Bankman-Fried] has a number of mannerisms that are associated with high-functioning people with ASD," wrote Fried, referencing Autism Spectrum Disorder. "He's bad at responding to social cues in 'normal' ways, uncomfortable looking people in the eye, uncomfortable with outward shows of emotion."

"It may be that some of the inmates will come to appreciate Sam once they get to know him. But miscommunication in that environment is dangerous, and Sam's traits greatly increase the likelihood of its occurring," she added.

Marc Mukasey, the lawyer overseeing the fraudster's sentencing, cited Fried's letter and others as indications of the former billionaire's "neurodiversity."

"He can be perceived as abrupt, dismissive, evasive, detached, or uncaring," said the filing.

Despite Sam Bankman-Fried's track record of ruining various lives and livelihoods, the fraudster's father, Stanford Law School professor Joseph Bankman wrote, "Nothing he has done can justify putting him at risk."

Miriam Baer, vice dean at Brooklyn Law School, told the Times that even if Judge Lewis A. Kaplan does not throw the Democratic mega-donor away for a century, he "could still give a very serious sentence given how young Mr. Bankman-Fried is — say, a 30- or 35-year sentence."

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News. He lives in a small town with his wife and son, moonlighting as an author of science fiction.
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