Brock Pierce to Bitcoin Foundation: I Will Not Step Down

Stan Higgins
May 19, 2014 at 21:35 UTC
Updated May 20, 2014 at 15:26 UTC

Recently elected Bitcoin Foundation director Brock Pierce has dismissed allegations made by detractors in a new letter addressed to the other members of the organization’s board of directors.

He wrote in the letter, obtained by The Wall Street Journal, that he regretted the furore created following his election, but stated that he would not step down from the Bitcoin Foundation board.

Brock said further that resigning in the wake of “hateful and uninformed chatter on bitcoin forums” would not be “rational, prudent or warranted”.

Brock added that such an act would be detrimental to the future of the Bitcoin Foundation, saying:

“It would set a bad precedent for the Foundation, rewarding those who make scurrilous accusations and engage in character assassination, often anonymously.”

“A resignation also could be perceived as an admission of guilt and I am guilty of nothing and have never been convicted, or even charged, with a crime.”

Brock’s removal from the board would impair his and his team’s efforts to rehabilitate Mt. Gox and fully compensate its customers, he said, and suggested that those behind the campaign to remove him had ulterior motives to oppose such rehabilitation or promote their own plans.

Brock denies allegations

In the letter, Brock reiterated previous denials of accusations levied against him. He wrote that related matters had been looked into by federal authorities but that nothing had come of them.

He wrote:

“Despite a full investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office, the FBI and the State of California into the allegations, I was never charged with anything whatsoever by anyone and was cleared of any wrongdoing.”

Brock pointed out in the letter that litigation brought against him was dismissed or settled. Additionally, new lawsuits filed against old business partners do not involve him, he said.

Brock addresses resignations

In the letter, Brock also touched on the wave of membership cancellations following his election. Notably, he referenced the fact that fewer than a dozen of the foundation’s 1,500 members decided to leave the organization.

Of greater concern, Brock said, is that similar reactions were not seen following the resignations of Charlie Shrem or Mark Karpeles, writing:

“I am at a loss to explain why they would do so now and not after Mr. Karpeles allowed Mt. Gox to implode or Mr. Shrem was indicted. I am saddened and angered by this.”

Pierce joined the foundation’s board of directors earlier this month. Brock’s election proved controversial due to a number of allegations dating back to 2000.

At the time, Brock and two of his associates were facing lawsuits alleging sexual abuse, but he was eventually exonerated. The allegations resurfaced after a new lawsuit was filed by one of the plaintiffs in the original lawsuits, Michael Egan.