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Virgil Griffith Now Indicted For NK Crypto Assigned To SDNY Judge Castel SDNY Stonewall

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - Guardian UK - The Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Jan 8 – Virgil Griffith who was arrested on Thanksgiving on federal charges of illegally traveling to North Korea and provide crypto currency advice and was denied bail on December 26 was on appeal on December 30 ordered released on bail. Inner City Press' live-tweeted thread here and new Patreon here.

  Now on January 8 Inner City Press has learned that Griffith has been formally indicted for "conspiracy to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act," here. His case has been assigned to SDNY Judge P. Kevin Castel, as 20-cr-15: the fifteenth criminal case of the year in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

  This information was NOT obtained from the US Attorney's Office which Inner City Press has repeatedly asked in writing to disclose whether they in fact released Griffith on the bail granted by Judge Broderick and reported exclusively by Inner City Press. More on Patreon here.

  But Inner City Press on January 6 exclusively attended and covered another crypto-currency case in the chambers of Judge Castel, SEC v. Telegram (about its proposed blockchain Grams).  We'll have more on this. More on Patreon here.

  On January 2, Inner City Press is informed by the US Attorney's press office that Griffith has still not been released: "He has not satisfied his bail conditions yet.  Still awaiting the approval of his co-signers and the posting of properties as collateral." More on Patreon here.

  This as belatedly Judge Broderick's order has gone online, signed only on January 2, including that " for the reasons stated on the record on December 30, the Defendant’s appeal is GRANTED. I set forth below the entirety of Defendant’s bail conditions: 1. A $1 million personal recognizance bond, secured by (1) the residence of the Defendant’s parents, Dr. Robert Griffith and Dr. Susan Griffith, located at [ ] Northport, AL 35473; and (2) the residence of Defendant’s sister, Joy Lewis, located at [ ] Columbia, MD 21046. Dr. Robert Griffith, Dr. Susan Griffith, and Joy Lewis are to assist the Government in obtaining documents it deems necessary to make these properties security for the bond. The bond shall not be considered secured until such time as the property has been assessed by the Government and has been made security for the bond. Defendant shall not be released until the conditions set forth in the paragraph are met; 2. Strict Pretrial Supervision; 3. Home detention with electronic and GPS monitoring at Defendants’ parents’ residence, located at [ ] Northport, AL 35473 (“the Residence”); 4. Home assessment of the Residence. Defendant shall not be released until the conditions set forth in the paragraph are met; 5. Defense counsel and the Government are to meet and confer about securing the cryptocurrency hard drives located at the Defendant’s apartment in Singapore, subject to the laws of Singapore. Defendant is to ensure that all individuals who have access to his apartment in Singapore are aware that these drives are not to be accessed, touched, or tampered with in any way until they are secured based upon the agreement between defense counsel and the Government. 6. Defendant is to participate in mental health treatment and evaluation as directed by Pretrial Services; 7. Defendant is to participate in drug treatment and testing as directed by Pretrial Services; 8. Defendant’s travel is restricted to the Northern District of Alabama, the Southern District of New York (“SDNY”), and the Eastern District of New York (“EDNY” and together with SDNY, the “New York Districts”). Further, Defendant shall only be permitted to travel to the New York Districts to (a) appear at the Thurgood Marshall United States Courthouse at 40 Centre Street, New York, New York and the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse at 500 Pearl Street, New York, New York for court appearances or as directed by his Pretrial Services Officer; or (b) meet with his counsel, Brian Klein, of Baker Marquart LLP and/or Sean Buckley of Kobre & Kim, and/or any other representatives of the aforementioned firms.. Defendant shall provide notice to and obtain approval from Pretrial Services for all such travel. To the extent Government deems it necessary, in connection with all visits to and from the New York Districts, Defendant shall be accompanied to the airport by an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation or other investigative agency designated by the Government, who shall ensure that he boards his flight; 9. Within the Northern District of Alabama, Defendant shall be permitted to leave the Residence for all purposes ordinarily permitted for a person in home detention, as well as to obtain state- or municipality-issued identification documents. Defendant shall provide notice to and obtain approval from Pretrial Services for all such departures from the Residence; 10. Defendant is to surrender all of his travel documents to Pretrial Services, including his Passport ID Card. Upon release, and in accordance with Condition No. 9, Defendant is to commence efforts to obtain a state- or municipality-issued identification card that will enable him to travel by air. Until Defendant obtains an alternate form of identification, Pretrial Services will facilitate his travel to the New York Districts for the purposes authorized in Condition No. 8 by providing Defendant with his Passport ID Card no more Case 1:19-mj-10987-UA Document 8 Filed 01/02/20 Page 4 of 6 5 than one day prior to his flight, which he will surrender to Pretrial Services upon his initial arrival in the SDNY, and retrieve his Passport ID Card from Pretrial Services for his trip back to Alabama. Defendant shall within a day of returning to the Northern District of Alabama return his Passport ID Card to Pretrial Services in the Northern District of Alabama. 11. Defendant is not to relocate from the Residence without prior approval of Pretrial Services; 12. Defendant shall not possess or use any smartphone or any cellular telephone with internet access capability; 13. Defendant will be allowed to have a computer in the Residence, which will be loaded with a monitoring software. Defendant is not to use any computer or other internet-capable device that does not contain such software; 14. Defendant’s internet activity will be limited to communicating with his counsel by e-mail. Defendant is not to access the internet for any other purposes, and is specifically prohibited from accessing any of his cryptocurrency accounts and from accessing the darkweb; 15. Defendant is not to communicate with or contact any of the witnesses and victims set forth in a list to be provided by the Government."

 Still on January 2 at noon, the US Attorney's filings citing SpankChain and the Dark Web were not online.  This is UNacceptable. We'll have more on this. More on Patreon here.

  The bail appeal hearing began just after 11 am before Judge Broderick. Griffith's main lawyer Brian E. Klein of Baker Marquart LLP was present at the defense table. In the gallery along with Inner City Press was Virgil Griffith's father, who said he had been reading Inner City Press' tweets.

  Despite the US Attorney's Office, which sent ever more senior Assistants into the courtroom as the proceeding went on, hammering away about the Dark Web and crypto currency wallets in Virgil Griffith's apartment in Singapore, as well as his alleged mulling of buying a St. Kitts passport, Judge Broderick ordered him released.

  The conditions include a $1 million bond secured by the homes of his father and sister. He will be allowed to e-mail with his lawyers, and even to use his passport card for travel, pending getting an Alabama state ID.

  At the proceeding's conclusion Inner City Press asked the Assistant US Attorney if his Office could appeal Judge Broderick's decision and, after a pause as long as it took for the elevator doors to close, he said yes, it could be appealed.

  As Inner City Press has complained, the case until now has remained sealed. That should be ending - watch this site. Here's from Inner City Press' exclusive (live) reporting thread, and Patreon here.

After bond signed and house revisited, Virgil Griffith will be released. His father tells Inner City Press he's been reading its tweets.

   We've asked the Griffiths and their lawyer to provide any updates, and have been in questions to the US Attorney's Office. Watch this site.
And Patreon here.

The US Attorney's Office cited his text messages to his parents about renouncing his U.S. citizenship and setting up a money laundering business in North Korea.

  In the Magistrates Court of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York his parents were present, along with Inner City Press as the only media. They were there since the morning, and watched the other cases Inner City Press reported on.

  Assistant US Attorney Kimberly Ravener told SDNY Magistrate Judge Barbara Moses that Griffith had misled Pre-Trial Services about his residence in Puerto Rico; his laywer Mr. Buckley first said Griffith owned it, then that he rented.

  Judge Moses asked why he has a residence in Puerto Rico. Buckley said Puerto Rico is a developing area in the crypto space.

  Griffith's request to be released was first stayed by SDNY District Judge Denise Cote, operating a "Part I" judge at the time. Buckley at the conclusion near 5 pm of the bail denial hearing on December 26 said he and a colleague flying in might seek to appeal. Inner City Press will continue to cover this case, as it covered the OneCoin trial. Here is its live-tweet threat of December 26, more on Patreon here...


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