Bitcoin Trial : Kleiman v. Wright Bitcoin lawsuit involving $57B BTC likely headed for mistrial

December 2nd, 2021

The estate of Dave Kleiman argued that he has legal rights to half of the Bitcoin mined by Satoshi Nakamoto, suing self-proclaimed Bitcoin creator Craig Wright. The federal jury in the case told the judge that they cannot all agree on a verdict on any of the questions involved. 

Who invented Bitcoin?

Craig Wright was sued by the estate of Dave Kleiman in a civil suit that alleges the two parties were partners who invented Bitcoin together. However, Wright states that he is the sole inventor of the leading cryptocurrency. 

Wright, an Australian information technology professional made the claim that he is Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of the world’s first cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. Kleiman was a computer scientist who was Wright’s business partner, who passed away in 2013. The estate of Kleiman claims that the two parties worked together to create the oldest blockchain network and that Wright defrauded Kleiman after his death.

However, Wright has been unable to provide Satoshi Nakamoto’s private keys of the Bitcoin address, which could instantly prove that he owned the account. 

Since Satoshi Nakamoto invented the world’s oldest cryptocurrency, it meant that the creator was also the earliest Bitcoin miner. In the early days when the network was introduced, the investor earned roughly 1 million in BTC, which has now reached $57 billion. The Kleiman estate would receive a payout of $28 billion if it won the civil suit.

However, skepticism remains that Wright may not have access to the funds unless he really is the inventor of Bitcoin. Wright’s lawyer, Andres Rivero said that the defendant was waiting to receive a delivery with the private keys.

The federal jury in the Southern District of Florida told Judge Beth Bloom that they were unable to all “agree on a verdict on any of the questions” in the fraud trial over $57 billion in Bitcoin.

Bloom told the jurors in the courtroom that the trial has been “expensive in time, effort, money and emotional strain for the plaintiff and defendant.” If the jury fails to come to a conclusion, the case will remain open and may need to be tried again.

The judge asked jurors to take all the time they need and sent them back to continue deliberating. If they cannot come to a decision, the lawsuit may continue into 2022.


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