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Judge Says No to Sanctions on Craig Wright, Clears Case for July Trial

Fredrik Vold
Last updated: | 2 min read

A judge has ruled against imposing sanctions on Craig Wright, the controversial Australian computer scientist and backer of Bitcoin SV (BSV), in the legal battle between Wright and the estate of his former partner Dave Kleiman. The judge cleared the case for trial in July.

Craig Wright. Source: a video screenshot, Youtybe, CoinGeek

The decision not to impose sanctions was made by the U.S. District Judge Beth Bloom after Kleiman’s defense team on May 21 requested sanctions be placed on Wright, instead of having the case go to trial, court documents filed on June 24 show.

Further, the judge has allowed Wright, a self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto who critics refer to as “Faketoshi,” to present an expert witness before the court to support a claim that he suffers from autism. The autism claim was brought up by Wright after being questioned about several inconsistent statements during the case.

However, one could argue that an alleged autism condition could theoretically help Wright get away with what may otherwise be perceived as false testimony, including a questionable list of bitcoin addresses that Wright claims to control.

According to Wright, his expert witness has diagnosed him with “Autism Spectrum Disorder with high intellectual skills.”

Shortly after the latest decision by the judge to move the case to trial, Calvin Ayre, a well-known supporter of Wright and Bitcoin SV, tweeted that Kleiman team’s request for sanctions was just an attempt “to short circuit a trial on their weak case” and that “Craig will win all his cases now.”

The Wright vs. Kleiman court case has taken several twists and turns since it was originally filed in February 2018. In August of last year, Wright confirmed in an interview that he would obey any court order, and potentially pay 50% of the bitcoins he mined in the cryptocurrency’s early days to Kleiman’s estate.

The case then once again took a turn in May of this year, when Kleiman’s legal team claimed that Wright has the keys to an encrypted file that may contain the private keys to over BTC 820,000 (around USD 7.63 billion). Additionally, the team alleged they have proof that the duo was working in partnership, potentially entitling Kleiman’s estate to half of the bitcoin they mined together.

The Kleiman versus Wright court case will be up for jury trial on July 6, according to an order filed with the US District Court in the Southern District of Florida by judge Beth Bloom.


Learn more:
Satoshi-era Bitcoin Miner Calls Craig Wright a Fraud Using “His” BTC Addresses
Craig Wright Fights Back: ‘You Don’t Understand Digital Signatures At All’