Hodlonaut Expects Craig Wright to Appeal Verdict in Norway

The Bitcoin advocate won a defamation case against Wright, who claims to be the founder of Bitcoin, but said the legal fight isn't likely over.

AccessTimeIconOct 25, 2022 at 6:14 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 25, 2022 at 7:19 p.m. UTC
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Magnus Granath, the Bitcoin advocate known as Hodlonaut on Twitter, said he is feeling “great” following his victory against Australian computer scientist Craig Wright in a defamation case in Norway, but said Wright will likely appeal the ruling and had plans to sue him in the U.K.

“It’s not over,” Granath said on CoinDesk TV’s “All About Bitcoin” on Monday.

Granath had sued Wright in Norway to try to preempt a suit in the U.K., which would be based on Granath's comments on social media that Wright had “lied and cheated” in his efforts to prove that he was Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous founder of Bitcoin. The trial in Norway last month looked to settle the yearslong debate of whether the tweets made by Hodlonaut in March 2019 were defamatory against Wright.

Last week, Oslo District Court Judge Helen Engebrigtsen ruled in favor of Granath, stating that the prominent Bitcoin community member “had sufficient factual grounds” in his claims that Wright had “lied and cheated” in his efforts to prove that he was Satoshi.

The victory, however, has come at a cost, according to Granath, who said that it’s taken up “enormous amounts of time” and money. He said it has also taken an emotional toll on him. Still, he said that he “remained calm” throughout the case.

The fight isn’t quite over. Wright’s attorneys previously told CoinDesk that Wright would appeal the ruling and warned that “anonymous online bullying” may have a “chilling effect on public discourse.”

Granath hinted at the likelihood that Wright would appeal the verdict, and may even “try to appeal to the [Norwegian] Supreme Court after losing this next appeal.”

Meanwhile, Granath may also face a defamation suit from Wright in the U.K. and predicts that lawsuit will be “extremely expensive to defend.” Wright has yet to pay Granath’s legal fees, which amount to upward of $400,000, Granath said.

Wright's reps didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.


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Fran Velasquez

Fran is CoinDesk's TV writer and reporter.