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  • Writer's pictureT Skevington and M Bacina

Kleiman case complications continue for Craig Wright

Updated: Jun 10, 2020

The ongoing saga of Ira Kleiman v Craig Wright continues unabated, as Craig Wright’s purported list of Bitcoin addresses forming part of the 'Tulip Trust' is again cast into doubt, following a message signed by 145 wallets containing Bitcoin (BTC) mined in the early years calling Craig Wright a “liar and a fraud.”

The message was published on May 25 with a list of 145 addresses and their corresponding signatures. Multiple sources have since confirmed that the listed addresses are all included among a list of addresses provided by Wright's legal team as being part of the 'Tulip Trust'. The 'Tulip Trust' is where Wright alleges billions of dollars of bitcoin were placed, outside of his control, with a bonded courier to deliver access to the trust.

Of course, this only lends further weight to the argument that the addresses are not, and may never have been, within Wright's control. The message itself reads:

Craig Steven Wright is a liar and a fraud. He doesn't have the keys used to sign this message. The Lightning Network is a significant achievement. However, we need to continue work on improving on-chain capacity. Unfortunately, the solution is not to just change a constant in the code or to allow powerful participants to force out others.

The Estate of Kleiman's legal team clearly agree, and almost immediately filed supplementary evidence arguing that:

Wright represented these 145 addresses were part of his bitcoin holdings and were locked in an inaccessible encrypted file. This week, the person that actually controls the private keys to those addresses used those private keys to declare that ‘Craig Steven Wright is a liar and a fraud’ and ‘doesn’t have the keys’ for those addresses — thus proving the addresses do not belong to Wright.

While Wright is no stranger to aspersions on his good name, including numerous sanctions and fines levied by the courts for lying and providing forged documents, these ongoing revelations will make it more difficult to maintain any argument that he controls the Bitcoin within the so called 'Tulip Trust'.

Given that the Estate of Kleiman's case relys on the implicit assumption that Wright is Satoshi, or part of the Satoshi group, and has access to a portion of the Bitcoin mined by Satoshi, a real question arises as to just how much Bitcoin Wright has access (or will have access) to, and even if Kleinman is successful, will there be a recovery?


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