Sam Bankman-Fried is Saying a Lot Without Saying Anything

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  • Sam Bankman-Fried has done a bunch of interviews recently to try and…well…do what?
  • The FTX founder has offered very little by way of explanation and has simply defended his own conduct
  • The purpose of the interviews remains a mystery, but they haven’t helped him

Sam Bankman-Fried has been doing so many interviews that you’d think he has a book coming out soon, but the fact is that, despite going against the advice of his lawyers, he isn’t actually saying much of any worth. What exactly were his lawyers worried about, and what has the end result of these interviews been?

What Were SBF’s Lawyers Afraid Of?

Bankman-Fried has conducted several interviews in the past week or so, most notably at the New York Times’s DealBook Summit where he was, incredibly, applauded off. This is despite he himself saying that his lawyers have advised him not to talk, and there is good reason for this. Under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, an individual has the right to refuse to answer questions if they fear that their responses may be self-incriminating. In such cases, a lawyer may advise their client to exercise this right and remain silent in order to avoid saying anything that could potentially be used against them in court.

Additionally, lawyers may also advise their clients not to say anything in order to avoid making any statements that could be taken out of context or misconstrued. In some cases, even a seemingly harmless statement can be used against a person in court, so lawyers may want to prevent their clients from making any statements that could potentially harm their case.

Bankman-Fried Was Never Going to Confess

Clearly, Bankman-Fried’s lawyers are terrified of him doing one thing – confessing. This is what everyone has been (wishfully) hoping for during his series of interviews, but he has steadfastly refused to take the blame for anything that went on at FTX, saying that he never knowingly commingled funds or committed fraud of any kind, throwing others under the bus and suggesting that the whole thing was just a mistake.

This has done nothing but turn the crypto public further against him, but seeing as he was never going to give away the deepest darkest secrets of FTX over a webcam, the purpose of his interviews is unclear. Everyone was expecting at least an explanation of how FTX could have grown so huge on such shaky foundations, and a modicum of insight into what the hell was going on for the past 12 months, but we’ve had none of this – Bankman-Fried has, weirdly, listened to his lawyers’ advice when it comes to what to say in the interview, but not to their advice when it comes to the doing interviews themselves.

Stop Talking, Sam

The reality is that Bankman-Fried somehow thought that facing up would somehow put him back in people’s good books again, but in saying nothing of value his appearances have had the opposite effect.

In short, Sam, listen to the guys in the expensive suits.