SafeMoon CEO bail release goes on hold after Feds cite flight risk

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United States federal prosecutors have managed to put SafeMoon CEO Braden John Karony’s bail release order on hold, citing flight risk and his release being a possible “danger to the community.

On Nov. 9, New York District Judge LaShann DeArcy Hall stayed a Nov. 8 bail release order after prosecutors challenged a Utah Magistrate judge’s decision to let Karony out on a $500,000 bail.

Prosecutors made the challenge to Judge Daphne Oberg’s decision in New York, saying the release order was given “without consideration of the defendant’s substantial financial means and ability to flee” and added his release posed a “continued danger to the community.”

“If convicted, the defendant faces a statutory maximum of 45 years’ imprisonment,” prosecutors wrote.

“These facts all provide powerful incentives for the defendant to leverage his substantial (and opaque) financial assets and foreign ties to avoid that outcome.”

Judge Oberg’s Nov. 8 order would have permitted Karony to stay at his Miami apartment and barred him from accessing crypto exchanges or wallets, holding or transacting crypto and banned him from engaging in promotional activities.

Prosecutors however claimed the Utah court overlooked Karony’s assets when setting his bail at $500,000. They alleged the SafeMoon chief provided “almost no information concerning his finances” and claimed he can access “assets totaling millions of dollars.”

Karony also has “substantial and ever-expanding” overseas ties and has spent months outside the U.S. in Europe and the United Kingdom with his fiancée, a British citizen and resident, prosecutors alleged.

Prosecutors also asked the court to transport Karony to New York and have him detained there which Judge Hall will consider at a later date.

Related: SafeMoon addresses recent exploits amid SEC charges

Karony was arrested on Oct. 31 at Salt Lake City International Airport and was charged alongside SafeMoon creator Kyle Nagy and chief technology officer Thomas Smith with conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy.

The Securities and Exchange Commission also charged the trio with various fraud charges and unregistered securities sales and alleged they misappropriated funds to purchase SafeMoon (SFM) tokens to prop up its price.

SafeMoon technology chief Thomas Smith was released on a $500,000 bond on Nov. 3 and is pursuing a plea deal while the Department of Justice said Nagy remains at large.

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