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Craig Wright’s Day in Court sees his BTC Fortune Cut in Half

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Craig Wright, or Satoshi Nakamoto as he likes to go by, looks as if he will have to pay 50 percent of his Bitcoin holdings to the estate of Dave Kleiman, a judge ruled on Monday. A figure in the region of $5 billion.

A source, who was an audience member at the trial, said that Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart recommended plaintiffs be awarded 50 percent of the bitcoin that Wright held before Dec. 31, 2013, as well as 50 percent of the intellectual property that Wright owned prior to Dec. 31, 2013.

This is a hammer blow to the Bitcoin SV leader who has been fighting this case since February 2018 and has often taken his gripes up in court. He tried to launch a claim of defamation against against Bitcoin Cash advocate Roger Ver, but had it thrown out straight away.

This latest case involving Wright began when Ira Kleiman – the brother of Wright’s late business partner Dave Kleiman – suing for $10 billion, alleging that Wright was trying to seize Dave’s Bitcoin holdings from when they were mining together.

From 2009 to 2011, David Kleiman and Wright allegedly mined 1.1 million Bitcoin together, which Wright entrusted to the ‘Tulip Trust.’ Now Kleinman is looking to get half of that back for his brother’s estate despite Wright alleging it is inaccessible. 

Through the proceedings, which ended with Wright being found to have perjured himself, he was outed for attempting to forge documents and lie in an attempt to claim the right to $5 billion in Bitcoin.

The reports emanating from the courtroom are still very fresh, and the case is not yet over. However, the alleged Bitcoin creator would not be entitled to a jury trial and cannot oppose the order though he can appeal, according to the source.

Wright’s reputation was always on the downward spiral. His clash with Roger Ver and the war that emanated between the two Bitcoin Cash forks did nothing to endure himself to the greater cryptocurrency community. 

He has been combative, and even a bit crazed, as he offered a bounty for the true identity of a Twitter avatar called ‘Hodlonaut’ to sue him for defamation and libel after he was reportedly instrumental in starting the hashtag #CraigWrightIsAFraud. 

The next few steps following this case will be fascinating to watch. If the proceedings do conclude with Wright owing $5 billion, it is a sizable chunk of change that could leave the so-called Bitcoin creator reeling, unless, of course, he is sitting on top of all of Nakamoto’s Bitcoin… 

Darryn Pollock
Darryn has been interested in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space since he heard about Bitcoin in 2015. He then decided to use his journalism degree to report on this fascinating fintech space in 2016, and has not looked back since.

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