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Sam Bankman-Fried’s parents fear his legal fees will ‘wipe them out’


The law professor parents of disgraced FTX boss Sam Bankman-Fried reportedly fear the family will go broke while paying for his defense against mounting litigation.

Joseph Bankman and Barbara Fried — each well-known figures at Stanford University — have stayed with their ex-billionaire son within the Bahamas for greater than a month as he faces a firestorm over FTX’s sudden collapse.

The parents “have told friends that their son’s legal bills will likely wipe them out financially,” the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing sources near the family.

“We hope this provides us some wisdom,” Bankman recently said, in accordance with those sources. “Otherwise, it will be too hard to take.”

A spokesperson for Bankman-Fried’s parents reportedly declined to say whether or not they are actively advising their son on legal matters.

Bankman-Fried is facing a raft of legal and regulatory scrutiny, including an ongoing class-action lawsuit on behalf of furious FTX customers and a federal probe into whether he engaged in market manipulation throughout the cryptocurrency sector. The 30-year-old is accused of using FTX customer funds to prop up Alameda Research, the failed sister cryptocurrency trading firm he also owned.

Joseph Bankman was heavily involved in FTX’s operations.Stanford University

As FTX careened toward bankruptcy, Bankman-Fried reportedly contacted his parents looking for advice. Bankman called his colleague, fellow Stanford law professor David Mills, who quickly realized the extent of the difficulty.

“Sam needs lawyers, and desperately,” Mills told Bankman, in accordance with the Journal.

When Bankman-Fried resisted internal calls to resign as FTX’s CEO, members of the doomed firm’s legal team reportedly appealed to his father. Bankman-Fried eventually relented and resigned on Nov. 11, the identical day FTX declared bankruptcy.

In late November, Bankman-Fried claimed he was all the way down to his last $100,000 and expressed uncertainty as to how he would pay for lawyers.

Despite being nearly broke, Bankman-Fried has hired defense attorney Mark Cohen — who formerly represented convicted sex offender Ghislaine Maxwell — and has sought advice from Mills, who makes a speciality of criminal defense.

Bankman reportedly served as a paid worker at FTX for nearly a yr before the corporate’s collapse. He accompanied his son to key meetings on Capitol Hill and helped guide the firm’s philanthropic efforts.

Barbara FriedBarbara Fried is a law professor at Stanford.Stanford University

Moreover, Bankman purportedly introduced his son to his former law student, tech investment kingpin Orlando Bravo, whose firm later poured $130 million into FTX.

As The Post reported last month, Bravo admitted to investors that he was “shocked” by FTX’s sudden plunge into chapter 11.

Bankman-Fried’s parents were also tied up in FTX’s dubious Bahamas real estate empire. In bankruptcy court, FTX’s latest leaders have accused Bankman-Fried and his allies of pillaging company resources to snap up $300 million in ritzy real estate on the island.

Sam Bankman-FriedSam Bankman-Fried already faces a class-action lawsuit over FTX’s collapse.Bloomberg via Getty Images

Bankman and Fried are reportedly listed on the deed for a beach house throughout the exclusive Old Fort Bay gated community.

Reuters obtained documents showing the property was intended as a “vacation home” for the family. A spokeswoman for Bankman-Fried’s parents said they’ve since vacated the property.

“Joe and Barbara never intended to and never believed they’d any helpful or economic ownership in the home,” the spokeswoman said. “Over the summer, they requested FTX counsel and out of doors counsel take steps to make clear the corporate’s helpful ownership of the home.”

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