‘Satoshi’ imitation ‘a serious abuse of procedural law’, the judge concludes

A bitterly fought lawsuit over a computer scientist’s claim to be the inventor of bitcoin constituted a “very serious abuse” of High Court procedure, a judge ruled today. In his 230-page judgment in Mr Justice Mellor set out the reasons behind his finding in March in the sixth week of a trial that Dr.’s claims Craig Wright were false. The Rolls Building hearing was watched by about 1,100 people around the world.

The case was brought by a group of American software developers seeking an explanation that Wright, an Australian-born entrepreneur living in Britain, was not “Satoshi,” the pseudonymous author of the 2008 white paper that sparked the bitcoin phenomenon of trillions of dollars. . Wright’s defense consisted largely of documentary submissions that the judge agreed were falsified. On cross-examination, Wright proved to be “an extremely slippery witness,” Mellor noted. At one point the forgeries put his lawyers, City Firm Shoosmiths, “in an impossible position,” the judge said.

Among the 47 forgeries proven in the verdict were documents claiming to be precursors to the groundbreaking 2008 White Paper. These were disputed by experts on the grounds that they were written in LaTeX software, which was not released in 2008 was available, and contained “evidence of anachronistic metadata” created by Wright’s “attempt to tamper” with the formatting that resembled Satoshi’s published white paper.

‘Dr. Wright lied about these matters (and attempted to abuse legal professional privilege) to conceal the fact that the LaTeX Files white paper was a recent creation,” the judge concluded. ‘The extensive effort of Dr. Wright to create an alternate story by forging documents in LaTeX marks him as a fraudster and his claim in this proceeding as a fraudulent claim.”

The verdict supports extensive expert evidence that challenges the authenticity of Wright’s original statements. Attempts to blame unknown “bad actors” for document tampering were “literally unbelievable.” On “numerous occasions,” Wright also tried unsuccessfully to pin the blame for discrepancies on his former legal advisors.

During the trial, Wright had sought to attack expert evidence on forgery on the grounds that reports had been prepared with the assistance of the plaintiff’s lawyers, IP specialist Bird & Bird. The judge ruled that there was “nothing at all wrong” with the way the reports were prepared and said: “I acquit Bird & Bird of any charges [the expert’s] reports were prepared inappropriately.

Overall, Wright’s submissions did not contain authentic “time capsule” documents, the ruling found. COPA’s evidence, on the other hand, was ‘compelling and compelling’.

‘Dr. Wright presents himself as an extremely smart person. However, in my opinion, he is not nearly as smart as he thinks he is. Both in his written testimony and in the days of oral testimony under cross-examination, I am fully convinced that Dr. Wright lied extensively and repeatedly to the court,” the verdict said.

Stating that the real ‘Satoshi’ would have little difficulty proving this fact, the verdict highlights Wright’s failure to prove his claim that he owns ‘genesis blocks’ of bitcoin that would be worth billions of pounds today . During cross-examination he tried to explain gaps in his evidence by using ‘technobabble’.

The judge noted that, judging from his correspondence and writings, the real Satoshi was “a calm, knowledgeable, cooperative, precise person with little or no arrogance,” adding, “I consider it highly unlikely that Satoshi ever would have resorted to lawsuits. against the [software developer parties in the case]’. This contrasted with Wright’s arrogance and record of serial litigation. “It is likely that the real Satoshi would never have wanted to prove in court that he was actually Satoshi, and certainly not in the manner that Dr. Wright attempted to do so,” the judge noted.

A preliminary injunction will be decided after a post-hand-down hearing.

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