Sam Bankman-Fried’s diet while behind bars in the Bahamas consisted of a jar of peanut butter, the disgraced FTX founder who is awaiting trial on federal fraud charges said.
“I spent a while trying to see how far a jar of peanut butter could get me,” Bankman-Fried told Puck News.
“It was a little touch and go for a while,” Bankman-Fried said of his health while he was detained at Fox Hill, the infamous rat- and maggot-infested jail which has a reputation for keeping inmates in harshly unsanitary conditions.
Bankman-Fried, who spoke to Puck News from his parents’ Palo Alto home, was arrested by Bahamian law enforcement officials last month after federal prosecutors in the US filed criminal charges stemming from the collapse of his cryptocurrency platform, FTX.
Following his arrest, it was reported that Bankman-Fried’s family called the prison where he was being held and asked if he could be provided vegan meals.
The 30-year-old former crypto mogul whose net worth was as high as $26 billion at one point was given his own room in the maximum security wing of the jail.
Bankman-Fried wasn’t allowed to receive visitors due to COVID-19 restrictions at the jail, a site that a warden once described as “not fit for humanity.”
He was due to remain in jail until at least Feb. 8, but he struck a deal with US prosecutors to drop his fight against extradition.
Last month, Bankman-Fried was released on a $250 million bond. Federal prosecutors have said his handling of FTX was a “fraud of epic proportions.”
Before his arrest last month, Bankman-Fried said in late November that he had “close to nothing” left and “maybe $100,000 in that bank account.”
In his recent interview with Puck News, Bankman-Fried insisted he was innocent and said he plans to fight the charges in court.
“Yeah,” he told Puck News when asked if he intends on proving his innocence. “That’s the plan.”
He revealed that his parents arranged to have a 75-pound German shepherd named Sandor by his side due to persistent fears for his security.
Bankman-Fried told Puck News that the private security guards his parents hired to protect their $4 million Palo Alto home where he is staying recently stopped one individual who sought to detain him in a “citizen’s arrest.”
“People are claiming to want to come here to make a citizen’s arrest. I don’t get it. I’ve already been arrested,” he said.
Bankman-Fried also revealed that his friends are no longer on speaking terms with him.
“For a number of years, I was incredibly lucky and fortunate in terms of a lot of the relationships and support that I had,” he said.
“Now there’s basically nothing left.”
Bankman-Fried added: “Most of the people who I was friends with are not talking to me.”
“I don’t blame people for wanting to try and avoid getting drawn into the s—show as best they can.”
Federal prosecutors have struck cooperation deals with Caroline Ellison and Gary Wang — Bankman-Fried’s top associates at FTX and Alameda Research.
Alameda is the hedge fund run by Ellison which allegedly used billions of dollars worth of FTX customer funds to cover risky bets.
FTX’s downfall was triggered by rival Binance’s decision to offload FTT, the FTX-created in-house cryptocurrency that Bankman-Fried used to underpin much of his exchange’s reserves.
When Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao backed out of his plan to bail out FTX, Bankman-Fried’s empire collapsed.
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