Craig Wright Assets Frozen by UK Judge to Prevent Him Evading Court Costs

Judge James Mellor found earlier this month that Wright was not, as he'd claimed, Bitcoin inventor Satoshi Nakamoto.

AccessTimeIconMar 29, 2024 at 11:35 a.m. UTC
Updated Mar 29, 2024 at 11:40 a.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global event for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now
  • Judge James Mellor ordered a worldwide freeze on 6 million British pounds of Craig Wright's assets.
  • In a court case brought by COPA, Mellor found earlier this month that Wright was not Satoshi Nakamoto, the inventor of Bitcoin.
  • The judge ruled there was a risk Wright would move his assets offshore to avoid paying costs related to the case.

A U.K. judge imposed a worldwide freezing order on 6 million British pounds ($7.6 million) of Craig Wright's assets to prevent him moving them offshore and evading costs arising from a court case that found he was not, as he'd claimed, Bitcoin inventor Satoshi Nakamoto.

In a March 14 decision, Judge James Mellor, who heard the case brought by the Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA), also found Wright didn't author the Bitcoin white paper nor the initial versions of the Bitcoin software. Shortly after that, Wright notified Companies House, the U.K.'s register of companies, that shares in his RCJBR Holding company had been transferred to DeMorgan, a company organized under the laws of Singapore.

According to a judgment dated Wednesday and posted on the website of the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund, COPA's costs amount to about 6.7 million pounds.

"Understandably, that gave rise to serious concerns on COPA’s part that Dr Wright was implementing measures to seek to evade the costs consequences of his loss at trial," Mellor wrote in the judgment, referring to the share transfer.

"Dr Wright has a history of default in relation to orders for the payment of money," Mellor wrote, before detailing some examples. " ... COPA has a very powerful claim to be awarded a very substantial sum in costs ... I consider there is a very real risk of dissipation."

Edited by Shaurya Malwa.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Sheldon Reback

Sheldon Reback is a CoinDesk news editor based in London. He owns a small amount of ether.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.