This Is (Hopefully) the Last CoinDesk Article to Mention Craig Wright

He "is not nearly as clever as he thinks he is," says a U.K. Judge reviewing the Australian computer scientist’s many questionable legal maneuvers.

AccessTimeIconMay 20, 2024 at 7:35 p.m. UTC
Updated May 20, 2024 at 7:38 p.m. UTC

Craig Wright is not Satoshi Nakamoto and not the author of the Bitcoin white paper, as was determined by Justice James Mellor, who handed down that judgment after the COPA v Wright trial wrapped up.

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But not only is Craig Wright not Satoshi Nakamoto and not the author of the Bitcoin white paper, he also wasted the court’s time, according to Mellor’s much-anticipated, 231-page written assessment of the trial.

“Craig Wright lied ‘extensively and repeatedly’ in both his written and oral evidence in the Crypto Open Patent Alliance case regarding his claim to be Satoshi Nakamoto, Judge James Mellor said in his written judgment on Monday.
“Mellor also concluded that the issue of injunctive relief – a legal remedy to stop a defendant from doing something – will be argued at a Form of Order hearing that will be appointed after the judgment has been handed down.”

Wright is apparently looking to appeal the decision – a bad sign for anyone who wished that COPA’s brave attempt to actually litigate and settle the matter of whether CSW was stealing Satoshi’s valor (by stealing his identity) once and for all.

Ever since he arrived on the scene in December 2015, Wright has been causing chaos for the crypto industry – including suing Bitcoin Core developers, public figures and a feline astronaut called Hodlonaut, who was an affirmed private citizen before his CSW imbroglio.

And that was essentially the motivation behind COPA’s suit. Although all of CSW’s legal claims essentially centered around the claim that he invented Bitcoin (he was able to copyright the white paper), in all of his libel and infringement lawsuits over the years that was always an incidental issue.

COPA, which is backed by Jack Dorsey and Coinbase, among others, put the question directly when it filed suit in 2021. Then, over several weeks in a U.K. court, the group was able to systematically prove to the court that Wright had been forging documents, spewing lies and filing costly and wasteful lawsuits for years.

“This decision is a watershed moment for the open-source community and even more importantly, a definitive win for the truth. Developers can now continue their important work maintaining, iterating on, and improving the Bitcoin network without risking their personal livelihoods or fearing costly and time-consuming litigation from Craig Wright,” a COPA spokesperson said.

In the judgment, which, really, goes above-and-beyond the call of duty to excoriate the Australian computer scientist, Justice Mellor said Wright "lied to the court repeatedly," committed forgery "on a grand scale" and “is not nearly as clever as he thinks he is.” (The FT’s Alphaville has a nice rundown of the juiciest morsels from the document.)

It’s not just that the judge appears to understand the extent of CSW’s grift, but also Bitcoin itself, arguing that seeking to control Bitcoin through the courts is something Satoshi would never dream of doing.

So, with this, I think we may finally be able to bid Wright adieu. He has dropped his five-year legal actions against Holdonaut and podcaster Peter McCormack, and will no longer be able to pursue cases in the U.K., Wright’s chosen venue for the majority of his legal actions due to the nation’s extremely lax libel laws.

Good night, sweet prince.

Edited by Benjamin Schiller and Marc Hochstein.


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Daniel Kuhn

Daniel Kuhn is a deputy managing editor for Consensus Magazine. He owns minor amounts of BTC and ETH.