Home Estate Planning Bitcoin on trial in London: ‘Inventor’ offers settlement weeks before court battle

Bitcoin on trial in London: ‘Inventor’ offers settlement weeks before court battle

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The self-proclaimed inventor of Bitcoin has issued a settlement offer to all parties ahead of an upcoming London High Court case that will decide on the creator of the first ever cryptocurrency.

Australian computer scientist Dr Craig Wright has long claimed to be behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, the name used by the person who created Bitcoin. The person who created the iconic cryptocurrency was the author of a key document known as the Bitcoin White Paper.

Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA), a non-profit set up to keep cryptocurrency technology free from patents, has sued him over his claim that he is the creator.

At the same time he has also sued 26 blockchain developers, comprising both companies and individuals, including cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, over recognition of alleged copyrights over the white paper.

The English High Court decided that the identity issue in both of these cases should be tried together and the trial is set for 5 February.

However, 12 days before all parties are due in the courtroom, Wright offered a settlement offer to all parties via his blog.

His offer included costs in the claims are borne by their respective parties, parties each make a charitable donation to Burnside, a Uniting Church in Australia, and for opposition to cease any media campaigns against him.

He said parties have until 4pm on 31st January 2024 to accept the offer or it will proceed to trial – however, COPA was quick to decline.

Responding to his settlement, COPA posted on X (formally Twitter): “Hard pass on that ‘settlement’. Just like Craig Wright forges documents and doesn’t quite tell the truth, his description of the settlement offer isn’t quite accurate either – it comes with loopholes that would allow him to sue people all over again.”

They also added that his settlement would “would force us to accept that he is Satoshi”.

On the day Wright offered the settlement, COPA posted that it has introduced new forensic evidence from expert witnesses “that definitively proves the inauthenticity of several documents that Craig Wright considers crucial to his claim that he is the founder of bitcoin.”

Wright is no stranger to the court after appearing several times over the years for Bitcoin-related reasons.

Back in August 2022, the High Court awarded him just £1 in damages after the academic secured victory in a libel lawsuit against Youtuber Peter McCormack.

His business, Tulip Trading, a Seychelles-based company, has also sued the Bitcoin Association and 15 developers for $4.5bn back in 2021. He, via his business, claimed his computer in his Surrey home was hacked and resulted in him being unable to access a substantial amount of digital currency assets, which Tulip Trading claims to own.

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