- Craig Wright, an Australian computer scientist, won a civil case in Miami against the family of his late business colleague and computer forensics expert David Kleiman.
- Half of the 1.1 million bitcoin Satoshi mined and stored was on the line, a stockpile valued at about $54 billion.
The claim of being Satoshi Nakamoto
A man who claims to be the inventor of bitcoin has just won a key US court dispute, preventing him from having to pay tens of billions of dollars in bitcoin to a former business partner.
In a 2016 blog post, Australian computer scientist Craig Wright hinted that he was Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonym used by the person or people who invented bitcoin. Wright’s allegation has been met with skepticism by many in the crypto world. This is partly because he hasn’t relocated any of the earliest bitcoins thought to have been mined by Satoshi.
Wright won a court case in Miami on Monday in which he was pitted against the family of his late business partner and computer forensics expert, David Kleiman. Half of Satoshi’s 1.1 million bitcoins, valued at about $54 billion, were on the line. The estate also claimed ownership of some of the early blockchain technology’s intellectual property.
The prosecution claimed that Kleiman and Wright were co-creators of bitcoin, giving him half of Satoshi’s alleged income. A federal jury in West Palm Beach sided with Wright and denied Kleiman’s estate any of the bitcoin.
Wright, on the other hand, was forced to pay $100 million in compensatory damages as a result of a breach of intellectual property rights involving W&K Info Defense Research LLC. It’s a partnership between the two males. Rather than going to the Kleiman estate, that money will go directly to W&K.
Wright remarked in a video released on Twitter shortly after the judgment, “This has been a remarkably excellent outcome, and I feel entirely vindicated.”
The mystery of Nakamoto
The secrecy surrounding bitcoin’s origins is one of the reasons why this legal litigation in South Florida received so much interest.
Nakamoto, who could be a single individual or a group of coders, was active until 2011. After texting a fellow developer to indicate they had “gone on to other things,” he abruptly departed the project. The enigmatic founder is thought to have mined up to 1.1 million bitcoins before disappearing.
If Wright had lost the court, he would have had to reimburse the estate with the Satoshi stash of coins. However, if Wright were to win at trial, he stated that he would prove his ownership. If he wins, he also promises to donate a large portion of his bitcoin riches to charity.