Former FTX Chief Executive Sam Bankman-Fried, who faces fraud charges over the collapse of the bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange, leaves following a hearing at Manhattan federal court in New York City, U.S. January 3, 2023.
CNN  — 

Federal prosecutors said FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s efforts to control about $500 million worth of Robinhood shares last year indicates steps the former crypto entrepreneur has taken to “obscure” his alleged crimes.

Prosecutors have since seized the stock and other assets totaling more than $700 million after Bankman-Fried laid claim to the shares saying he legitimately bought them and needed the money to defend against the criminal charges he’s facing.

In a letter to Judge Lewis Kaplan involving Bankman-Fried’s bail, prosecutors argued he should still be prevented from moving FTX assets.

“Since the Government’s seizure, the defendant has claimed that he would direct the majority of these funds toward making customers whole, but the original circumstances of the purchase of these shares, through a foreign special purpose vehicle with no public connection to FTX or Alameda, further indicate the steps the defendant has taken to obscure his criminal misuse of FTX customer property,” they wrote.

The new allegation comes as prosecutors and lawyers for Bankman-Fried have been going back and forth over the terms of his bail after authorities alleged he made contact with the former general counsel of FTX in what they said suggests witness tampering.