Months after FTX co-founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried was found guilty on seven federal fraud and conspiracy charges related to the collapsed exchange, the first photo of the disgraced crypto mogul in prison has reportedly emerged.

Shared on Twitter (aka X) by Tiffany Fong, a content creator who befriended Bankman-Fried and interviewed him several times after his downfall, the alleged prison photo shows the one-time crypto icon alongside other prisoners, all but one of whom have their face censored to protect their privacy.

In the photo, which Fong says was taken on December 17 last year at Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) Brooklyn, Bankman-Fried strikes a familiar look with a t-shirt, sweat shorts, and sneakers—but he appears to be skinnier than in previous, pre-prison photos. He also has a beard, as opposed to his typical clean-shaven look.

Fong obtained the photo from a recently freed inmate whom she refers to as “G Lock,” who is the only other person in the photo whose face is not obscured. She shared a short clip from a video interview with the former prison associate of Bankman-Fried, who calls Sam his “son” and spoke about his behavior and personal upkeep habits behind bars.


In the clip, G Lock says that Bankman-Fried looks “scruffier than a motherfucker,” and says that the fallen crypto founder had not been showering very often at the time. G Lock, described as a former member of the Blood gang, added that Bankman-Fried told him that he wanted to try growing out a beard because it’s something he hadn’t done before.

Bankman-Fried was convicted in November for a litany of crimes, including taking billions of dollars worth of customer funds from FTX to prop up sister investment firm Alameda Research during the bear market run that preceded FTX’s collapse.

Even so, G Lock believes that Bankman-Fried is ultimately a “good guy”—though G Lock claims that he’s “weird as shit” and “can be strange”—and calls out for President Joe Biden to pardon the FTX co-founder amid his re-election campaign this year.


“Free Sam Bankman,” G Lock says. “Joe Biden, you know what’s up. Before you leave, pardon my son… you know what to do.”

Fong said that she plans to post the full video interview with G Lock in the coming days via her YouTube channel and that it will dig deeper into Bankman-Fried’s alleged behavior behind bars and how other inmates are treating him.

The long FTX bankruptcy saga may ultimately resolve with a semi-happy ending for customers, as lawyers for the firm said in late January that “customers and general unsecured creditors with allowed claims will eventually be paid in full,” according to its current plan.

However, that’s subject to change. Some customers are unhappy with the current plan, which is based on the value of their crypto assets as of November 2022, when FTX collapsed. That’s because the crypto market has recovered substantially since; the price of Bitcoin, for example, has surged from about $17,000 then to over $51,000 today.

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

Stay on top of crypto news, get daily updates in your inbox.