Winklevoss Capital, Charlie Shrem Settle $26 Million Bitcoin Lawsuit

Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss have settled their case against Charlie Shrem, whom they previously claimed owed them $26 million worth of bitcoin.

Apr 17, 2019 at 3:50 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 1:52 p.m. UTC

Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss have settled their lawsuit against fellow early bitcoin entrepreneur Charlie Shrem, whom they previously claimed owed them $26 million worth of the cryptocurrency.

In an April 5 court filing, Judge Jed Rakoff of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed the case, explaining that the parties had informed the court they had reached a settlement.

However, both parties have the right to reopen the cause and proceed to trial within 30 days, or by May 5, "if the settlement is not fully effectuated," the judge wrote.

The terms of the settlement are confidential, Brian Klein, Shrem's lawyer, told CoinDesk.

According to a separate filing by the attorney for the twins' Winklevoss Capital Fund (WCF), the plaintiff in the case, "WCF and Shrem will each bear their own attorneys’ fees and costs. The case will not be reopened."

In a statement provided to CoinDesk, Shrem said:

"From day one, I’ve maintained the allegations are bogus, and they are of course. After their attorney was sanctioned and they were ordered to pay my legal fees twice, we recently reached a confidential resolution, and I’m dismissed from the case. I’m thankful for Brian Klein and my legal team and pleased to have this behind me."

Early days

The Winklevoss brothers had alleged, in their case filed in September of last year, that back in 2012 Shrem had accepted a total of $1 million to buy bitcoin on their behalf and later realized that Shrem had not given them the full value of the amount in bitcoin.

They claimed to be short by roughly 5,000 bitcoin, worth about $26 million at today’s prices.

At the time of the deal in 2012, one bitcoin was worth approximately $12.50.

Before the settlement was reached, Shrem had sought to depose the Winklevosses' attorney, Tyler Meade.

CoinDesk will update this article as more details are obtained.

Charlie Shrem image via CoinDesk archives

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