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Blogs & Articles: Farewell To Faketoshi; The Highlights of Craig Wright’s Swan Song 🔗 10 weeks ago

MyLegacyKit on Medium

COPA v Wright: the roots of the case, the Joint Trial with surprise oral ruling, the aftermath, and more

Written by Arthur van Pelt
ABOUT EDITS to this article: as more material may become available after the publication of this article, it could have edits and updates every now and then. In that sense, this article can be considered a work in progress, and become a reference piece for years to come.

How It Started

The prelude of Craig Wright’s swan song dates back to early 2021. In January of that year, Craig’s counsel ONTIER started to send cease and desist letters around on behalf of their client, related to his alleged Bitcoin whitepaper copyright.

Yesterday both Bitcoin.org and Bitcoincore.org received allegations of copyright infringement of the Bitcoin whitepaper by lawyers representing Craig Steven Wright,” the Bitcoin.org statement about the incident details. “In this letter, they claim Craig owns the copyright to the paper, the Bitcoin name, and ownership of Bitcoin.org. They also claim he is Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin, and the original owner of bitcoin.org. Bitcoin.org and Bitcoincore.org were both asked to take down the whitepaper. We believe these claims are without merit, and refuse to do so,” Bitcoin.org’s operators further insisted.” — Bitcoin.com News (January 21, 2021)

Where Bitcoin.org initially refused to comply with Craig Wright’s (obviously false) demands, on January 20, 2021 Bitcoincore.org took the other side of the bet, and immediately complied with Craig his demands. A pull request “Remove bitcoin.pdf” was entered on Github and almost immediately effectuated with a commit by head developer Wladimir van der Laan.

Although this move of Bitcoincore.org was criticized by some in the Bitcoin community, it is also very understandable that the Bitcoin developers (of which several are unpaid volunteers, and who had initially more or less by accident copied the PDF file with the development content from bitcoin.org for their own website) were not looking for costly, stressful lawsuits with a known to be very aggressive and well funded litigant.

Further down this article we will learn a little more about what type of aggressive person Craig Wright actually is, which translates into his litigation.

Will we finally see it happen, Craig Wright being declared Faketoshi in court? Keep reading!

Online magazine Protos couldn’t help diving into the matter a bit deeper, highlighting one of Craig Wright’s homemade Bitcoin whitepaper forgeries — with hilarious typo — that he had been creating almost two years earlier.

Almost two years earlier? Yes.

The reader can verify that for him/herself. On this BSV related website this very same forged Bitcoin whitepaper is still available, and in the metadata of this Craig Wright made forgery a ‘LastModified’ date of August 26, 2019 can be found. To put this in perspective, after that 2014 and 2015 were already very productive years in Craig Wright’s Bitcoin fraud career when it comes to creating forgeries, in 2019 Craig Wright needed new sets of forgeries for several lawsuits he was running: Kleiman v Wright, Wright v McCormack and two court room cases with hodlonaut involved; one in the UK and one in Norway.

The Bitcoin whitepaper forgery in the upcoming Protos article is among this latter series of forgeries. And Protos couldn’t know this at this very moment in time, but this very same forgery would also pop up in the COPA v Wright case. More about that later!

Source: Protos

Self-styled Bitcoin creator Craig Wright has reportedly issued copyright strikes against sites hosting Satoshi Nakamoto’s whitepaper.

According to BSV mouthpiece CoinGeek, Wright wants to force operators of sites bitcoin.org, bitcoin.com, and bitcoincore.org to remove copies of Bitcoin’s whitepaper, which was first shared under an open MIT license usually reserved for code.

Wright’s latest beef likely stems from an adamant belief that their own crypto project Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV) — a fork of a fork of Bitcoin — is the real Bitcoin.

Wright’s letters supposedly claim he doesn’t consent to the publication of “his whitepaper by them,” wrote CoinGeek, before noting Bitcoin’s whitepaper is readily available on Wright’s personal blog instead.

This is the error-laden Bitcoin whitepaper found on Craig Wright’s blog. (image Protos)

So, Wright would apparently prefer popular Bitcoin sites to stop referring to Bitcoin as Bitcoin, and instead name his smaller crypto BSV as the real deal in promotional materials.

However, Wright’s version is riddled with spelling errors and other subtle edits. Even the title is misspelled and has extra spaces (“Bitcoin: A Peer-to-eer Electronic Cash System”).

So far for the Protos article. As it appears, also Jack Dorsey’s company Square, Inc. (renamed to Block on December 10, 2021) had received Craig’s letter, and they asked Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA) to handle further action.

So COPA’s counsel Bird & Bird wrote to ONTIER on February 5, 2021, requesting ‘further information’ about Craig Wright’s Bitcoin whitepaper copyright claim.

COPA explained in a tweet on the same day:

COPA stands for an open financial system and was formed to remove barriers that stifle innovation. We are hosting the Bitcoin whitepaper and stand with our members and the crypto community to address this issue. Here’s our letter in response to last week’s cease and desists.

Apparently, Craig Wright chose not to respond to COPA’s inquiry within the two weeks indicated in their letter, which ignited COPA’s next action: they sued Craig Wright on April 12, 2021.

Source: Twitter

The COPA v Wright case is born.

And at this very moment, April 2021, hardly anyone could predict that this case, which will be known under the court code number IL-2021–000019, would ultimately become the mother of almost all Craig Wright related lawsuits.

The COPA v Wright case (2021–2024 till trial)

In COPA’s Particulars of Claim we learn that Craig Wright actually did respond to the letter of Bird & Bird dated February 5, 2021.

On 19 February 2021, Ontier, on behalf of Wright, responded to the 5 February letter. They declined to answer the questions posed in the 5 February letter claiming it was “an improper attempt to extract evidential material about our client and his claim to which your client and its members have no entitlement at this time” and repeated the assertion, without adding support, that Wright is the owner of the copyright in the Bitcoin White Paper.

This letter also made it clear that Wright does not consent to the Claimant or its members using the Bitcoin White Paper and asked that both the Claimant and its members remove the Bitcoin White Paper from their respective websites and social media accounts.

Following up on his threats, including by way of his cease and desist letters, to enforce his rights against the crypto community, Wright has issued proceedings in the English Courts against Cobra on 24 February 2021. Cobra was one of the entities that received a cease and desist letter. The action against Cobra is against persons unknown, because the individual(s) behind Cobra are not public.

In the premises, Wright has threatened to enforce his alleged rights against the Claimant, members of the Claimant and third parties.

Cobra, who is/are actually going by the spelling Cøbra and who is/are also known as CobraBitcoin on Twitter, would ultimately hear a default judgment ‘no more downloading Bitcoin whitepaper from bitcoin.org in the UK’ from the judge, as Cøbra decided to remain anonymous to keep his family and closest relatives free from possible backlashes of this case.

After some back and forth between parties, Craig Wright lost his first strike out attempt of a COPA application in December 2021. COPA is therefore allowed to amend their Particulars of Claim with an “allegation that various documents referred to by Craig Wright are “forged or otherwise doctored”, and thus with an allegation of dishonesty”.

This amendment will have massive consequenses for Craig Wright for the rest of the lawsuit. Because Justice Mellor, who will take over this case at some point from His Honour Judge Paul Matthews, is now forced to rule about this additional allegation.

“Decision

In the result, therefore, I dismiss the application so far as it relates to the evidence exclusion order sought by the defendant.

Application to re-amend the amended particulars of claim

That only leaves the question of the application by the claimant to re-amend the amended particulars of claim. It will be seen from earlier parts of this judgment that I accept the deletion of paragraph 63 to 65, and the additions at paragraphs 66, 66A and 67. The two additional sentences at the end of paragraph 66 make clear that what is alleged is said to amount to dishonesty. The additional sentence at the end of paragraph 67 makes clear that it is being alleged that the various documents there referred to were “forged or otherwise doctored”, and thus an allegation of dishonesty. There are one or two purely formal amendments elsewhere in the particulars of claim, but I do not need to take up time in this judgment with them. I will give permission to the claimant to re-amend the amended particulars of claim in the form attached to the application notice.

Conclusion

In the result, I dismiss the defendant’s application to strike out and for an evidence exclusion order, and allow the claimant’s application for permission to re-amend the particulars of claim. I should be grateful to receive an agreed draft minute of order to give effect to this judgment.

Fun Fact: In the same judgment, HHJ Paul Matthews did not bother about Craig Wright’s request to start using Craig’s Dr title.

[…] the defendant’s team told me that the defendant requested that the title of my judgment be amended so that the defendant’s name include his university degree of doctor […] Be that as it may, the claim was begun against the defendant under his full names, no application has ever been made to the court to alter the intitulement of the action, no argument has taken place on the point, and no authorities have been referred to. The point has been sprung on the court at the last minute. Dr Wright is justly proud of his academic achievement, but I do not think the court should be dealing with this minor dispute at this very late stage and on such an inadequate basis. I mean no disrespect to Dr Wright by not doing so.

In February 2022 we find another ruling of HHJ Paul Matthews, about some costs awarded to COPA. However, for another reason this judgment is way more interesting, because here we obtain a peek into the kitchen of the case, and are becoming aware of what is going on behind the otherwise closed doors of the court room.

And Matthews is not amused about something, and he calls that something “mud-slinging and ultra-aggressive and unco-operative behavior towards each other”. Please note meanwhile that Craig Wright is still represented by ONTIER at this moment in time. Craig will change counsel two times over the remaining course of this lawsuit however, and the issue raised here by Matthews is not repeated.

The problem is that, in modern times, the conduct of business relations has become so legalised, that many business-people see litigation, not as a means of resolving disputes (which is after all what the state provides it as), but as one of obtaining leverage in further negotiations. It is thus simply a modern aspect of doing business. To mangle Von Clausewitz, litigation has become the continuation of business by other means. This is highly regrettable, not least because there are many other litigants who play by the rules, and are disadvantaged as a result.

Decision

I am bound to say that, as an application for costs to be awarded on the indemnity basis, I find all this mud-slinging (on both sides) not only unedifying, but also somewhat underwhelming. Whatever the position forty years ago, the conduct of this litigation is, most regrettably, not out of the norm for these days. Both sides are behaving in an ultra-aggressive and unco-operative way towards each other, which is certainly not conducive to the efficient conduct of the litigation. In all the circumstances of this case, I do not think that it is appropriate to award indemnity costs to one of these two sides against the other. To do so would be to encourage similar behaviour in future.

Couldn’t help noticing that Artie, the undersigned, was regularly talk of the town in BSV land in recent months

In July 2022, Craig Wright starts two lawsuits.

  • A ‘Passing Off’ case against Coinbase (IL-2022–000035)
  • A ‘Passing Off’ case against Kraken (IL-2022–000036)

Based on the (false) narrative that BSV is the only Bitcoin with the real Bitcoin Characteristics, furthermore that BTC is a 2017 ‘airdrop’ and BCH is a 2018 ‘airdrop’ and therefore passing off as Bitcoin, Craig Wright is looking for:

an injunction restraining each of the Defendants from passing off a digital tradable asset as:
(a.) the digital tradable asset using the Bitcoin System with the Bitcoin Characteristics through use of the signs BITCOIN, BTC or BCH or any colourably similar sign;
(b.) otherwise having the heritage of the Bitcoin System and/ or having the Bitcoin Characteristics.

Of course he also wants all the material used for passing off to be destroyed, and an inquiry into the financial damages of this alleged passing off, and payments of these damages, costs and further relief to him.

In November 2022, Craig Wright starts another lawsuit against a long list of parties: 3 handfuls of Bitcoin developers and ex-Bitcoin developers, and the companies Block, Spiral BTC, Squareup Europe, Squareup International, Blockstream, Chaincode Labs, Coinbase Global, CB Payments, Coinbase Europe, Coinbase Inc. and here they are again: Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA).

What does Craig Wright want with this lawsuit, which gets the court code number IL-2022–000069?

An injunction restraining each of the Defendants from doing any of the following acts:

- infringing the Database right subsisting in the Bitcoin Blockchain;
- infringing the copyright subsisting in the Bitcoin File Format;
- infringing the copyright subsisting in the Bitcoin White Paper;

and of course a declaration that: Database Rights subsist in all or any of the Database/s and that the Claimant is the owner of them, Copyright subsists in the Bitcoin File Format and that the Claimant is the owner of it and Copyright subsists in the Bitcoin White Paper and the Claimant is the owner of it.

Next to this Craig Wright also claims damages, costs and other relief etcetera again.

In their Defense, the Bitcoin developers not only criticize the false content of Craig Wright’s claims, they also bring up another point of attention, which they call “real concerns about an improper collateral purpose, such as to be an abuse of the Court’s process;”.

Note that the ‘C1’ mentioned is short for Claimant 1, which is Craig Wright.

In addition to the serious credibility issues identified at paragraph 30 of the Coinbase Defence, the Bird & Bird Defendants have real concerns that the instant claim (which is the latest in a series of substantial claims brought by C1 or entities under his control) has been brought for an improper collateral purpose, such as to be an abuse of the Court’s process; namely, to bully, harass and intimidate those who do not accept that C1 is Satoshi or share his idiosyncratic opinions concerning Bitcoin:

7.1. C1 has publicly declared himself “the punishment of God in cryptocurrency” and threatened “nuclear Armageddon” and “Jihad” against those who do not share his view that BSV is the only ‘true’ Bitcoin.

7.2. C1 has made various public comments abusive of at least D2-D12 and evincing an intention to cause them personal devastation. Examples include “The cases will be like a lottery. Most BTC dev[eloper]s will fold. A few will be bankrupted, lose their families and collapse” and “I will personally hunt every dev[eloper] until they are broke, bankrupt and alone”.

It is now interesting to know that a judge called Justice Edward James Mellor is overlooking all these three cases (the two ‘Passing Off’ cases plus the ‘Copyright’ case) from their starting points in 2022. And initially, in February 2023, Justice Mellor decided that Craig Wright cannot continue with one element of the ‘Copyright’ case, as the Bitcoin File Format claim of the case is kicked out based on, basically, no merits.

Craig Wright wouldn’t be Craig Wright, however, if he didn’t appeal this decision of Justice Mellor, and this time Craig hit the jackpot. In appeal this decision is overturned by three appeal judges (Lady Justice Asplin, Lord Justice Arnold and Lord Justice Warby), so in July 2023 Craig Wright is allowed to continue with the File Format claim again, as part of the total ‘Copyright’ case.

Justice Edward James Mellor

In the meantime, likely around end of 2022, Justice Mellor became aware of the COPA v Wright case, and HHJ Matthews was more than happy to hand this case over to Justice Mellor, who subsequently halted both the ‘Passing Off’ cases and the ‘Copyright’ case, and he then made the COPA v Wright case the “Identity Issue” umbrella case for a Joint Trial in 2024, as the — heavily disputed — Satoshi identity of Craig Wright is the core element of all these four cases.

For the number crunchers, we now have the following situation in court under Justice Mellor his guidance:

‘Passing Off’ case Coinbase (IL-2022–000035, halted)
‘Passing Off’ case Kraken (IL-2022–000036, halted)
‘Copyright’ case (IL-2022–000069, halted)
COPA ‘Identity Issue’ case (IL-2021–000019, continued to Joint Trial)

To understand the stakes here, what is influencing and affecting what; when Craig Wright is found not to be Satoshi Nakamoto in the COPA ‘Identity Issue’ case, he will almost automatically also lose the two ‘Passing Off’ cases and the ‘Copyright’ case. And again, the ‘Copyright’ case is a case about Bitcoin whitepaper copyright, Bitcoin database rights and Bitcoin File Format copyright.

Note that by Mellor’s Directions Order in the Summer of 2023, the Bitcoin developers join forces with COPA and are seen as defendants for the Joint Trial, while Craig Wright has now become the claimant for the purpose of the Joint Trial.

Now, may the games begin.

We catch up with the new situation in September 2023. Here’s where things are starting to get hectic. A few days before the Joint Trial started on February 5, 2024, Bird & Bird files a witness statement with the following timeline covering September 2023 — February 2024.

It has become a familiar experience in this case to meet a major deadline such as the exchange of skeletons or evidence, only for Dr Wright to seek to add further reliance material an hour or two later such that it could not be addressed in a timely manner. So it is in this case. As the Court will be aware, this is now the fourth set of documents that Dr Wright has relied upon.

First, there were his original set of reliance documents, which were disclosed and nominated at the proper time. These were addressed in the first Madden Report [forensic report of almost 1,000 pages describing 431 of Craig Wright’s documents, report handed to Craig on September 1, 2023] and found to consist substantially of inauthentic documents (a finding with which Dr Wright’s own expert, Dr Placks, largely agreed).

Then, Dr Wright sought (and received) a second chance from the Court. He responded to the expert evidence by ‘discovering’ a new drive, from which he produced 97 New Documents as his second-chance Reliance Documents — for which permission was sought (and granted) at the pre trial review [PTR, held December 15, 2023]. Most of these were found to be inauthentic by way of the Fourth Madden Report and were agreed by Dr Wright’s own expert witness, Mr Lynch, to have been created in September 2023.

A little after ‘discovering’ those documents, Dr Wright discovered a third tranche of documents, his LaTeX files, and added a request for permission to rely on these at the PTR (though he would not disclose them beforehand). These third-chance reliance documents were said by Dr Wright and his solicitors to be of critical importance, yet were found to be entirely inauthentic by way of the Rosendahl report, and by agreement with Dr Wright’s own expert witness (Mr Lynch). These files were also said by Dr Wright to have no metadata:

however, metadata did in fact exist and was available through Overleaf. Once that was (very belatedly) provided, it showed that Dr Wright had edited the LaTeX files in November and December 2023 (as is well summarised in MacFarlanes’ letter to the Court of 23 January 2024) and the raw data annexed to it.

Following receipt of the various expert reports in relation to the 97 New Documents and the LaTeX Files, Dr Wright now seeks to rely on a yet further, extremely late, fourth tranche of 24 documents (the “the Application Documents”).

All told, Dr Wright has had the benefit of well over 1,500 pages of expert evidence explaining the various ways in which forgeries can be detected in digital documents. However, for the reasons explained below, the Application Documents appear to be no more authentic nor probative than the three sets of reliance documents referred to above.

In total, between 500 and 550 forgeries have been uncovered and mapped out by COPA during the COPA v Wright case. 70 of them are described in detail in two of my articles “Faketoshi And The Madden50” and “Faketoshi Files II: The Madden20”, which contain full and unedited copies of parts of the Madden reports as filed by COPA.

Spice on Twitter: "A computer forensics expert analyzing the reliance documents submitted by @Dr_CSWright pic.twitter.com/WMjdTGemTa / Twitter"

A computer forensics expert analyzing the reliance documents submitted by @Dr_CSWright pic.twitter.com/WMjdTGemTa

Christen Ager-Hanssen and the Mock Practice Trial

There should also be a section about Christen Ager-Hanssen (CEO nChain late 2022 — September 2023), because Christen played a small but nevertheless important role in the COPA v Wright saga during his short stint as CEO of nChain.

Firstly, early 2023 somewhere Christen helped Craig Wright change counsel from ONTIER to Travers Smith. However, that engagement with Travers Smith was shortlived. After Christen Ager-Hanssen left nChain with a healthy dose of turmoil in September 2023, Craig Wright changed to a new counsel called Shoosmiths in October 2023.

And Shoosmiths will eventually represent Craig Wright during the COPA v Wright Joint Trial in February and March 2024.

Source: Twitter

The following quote is from the CoinGeek article that Christen Ager-Hanssen is posting above. From the CoinGeek article we learn that Craig Wright also changed counsel in the United States of America a bit later in the year 2023. So law firm Rivero Mestre is out, and law firm Greenberg Traurig is in. This is otherwise only mildly related to the COPA v Wright case, of course, since the Kleiman v Wright case in Miami, Florida was not primarily about judging if Craig is Satoshi or not. On the contrary, that was explicitly excluded from the decisions to be made by the Judges and/or Jury in the Kleiman case.

Source: Order August 2019

Back to CoinGeek:

Dr. Craig Wright has appointed new counsel in the United States: high-ranked Miami-headquartered firm Greenberg Traurig.

It’s the latest entry in an ongoing legal overhaul for Dr. Wright as he prepares for a blockbuster legal season; he had earlier replaced his U.K. counsel — ONTIER LLP — with heavy hitters Travers Smith. In January 2024, Jack Dorsey’s Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA) will seek to prove in a lengthy trial in the U.K. courts that Dr. Wright is not the author of the Bitcoin white paper. That case will determine the identity issue for a number of Dr. Wright’s other U.K. cases, including his highly consequential passing off case against BTC developers, accusing Coinbase, Kraken and the BTC partnership of improperly passing off BTC as the real Bitcoin. Should the case succeed, BTC will no longer be permitted to be referred to as ‘Bitcoin’ without Dr Wright’s approval.” — CoinGeek, August 11, 2023

The only thing that will possibly be proven when Craig Wright is declared ‘he’s not Satoshi Nakamoto’ in the COPA v Wright case is that the foundation of Ira Kleiman, who has been presuming for years that Craig Wright is Satoshi Nakamoto in his fraud case against Craig Wright, was, as many warned him about, a totally wrong foundation.

Will that change anything related to the Kleiman v Wright case? No, of course not, because the Jury verdict in Kleiman v Wright didn’t even remotely hint to the possibility that Craig is Satoshi. This verdict in December 2020 of $100 million for “Conversion” (with $43 million in prejudgment interest added in March 2021) only related to Craig Wright’s fraudulent overhaul of Ira’s brother Dave Kleiman’s W&K company’s 2011 IT/cybersecurity material into a Bitcoin fairy tale in 2013 that Craig Wright completely pulled from his behind. In the process, Dave Kleiman, who had passed away in April 2013, was dragged into this fairy tale in July 2013 to further Craig Wright’s Australian tax fraud that he was executing in that period.

Secondly, and more importantly, Christen, who was intensely aware of the controversial situation around Craig Wright’s claim to be Satoshi Nakamoto, was involved with a COPA v Wright Mock Practice Trial that took place on September 22, 2023. In an October 27, 2023 Norwegian article (that I translated for my followers) we find a rather detailed description of what happened during that Mock Practice Trial.

Massive Liar”
In offices at 7–8 Market Place, just a stone’s throw from Oxford Street, a so-called “war-room” had been set up in the deepest secrecy. A special session was prepared here on September 22 this autumn. This was dry training for the big trial against the California billionaires. Now Craig Wright was to be tested on whether he was really Satoshi Nakamoto, but in a controlled setting. According to Ager-Hanssen, the real aim was to pulverize Wright’s explanation.

One hired counsel grilled Wright, while another defended the evidence. Wright responded with a story he has told many times before in various court cases around the world: The story of how he created bitcoin, was horrified by how the technology was being used, deleted important evidence, before changing his mind.

Thorough scripts for the interrogation were prepared in advance:

We have now spent several weeks going through the evidence. With all due respect, the question is simple. Is Dr. Wright Satoshi Nakamoto? was a central question for the man who played COPA’s representative.

He continues:

The answer to that question is a resounding no.

The grilling of Wright was “exceedingly powerfully presented,” considers the person who takes on the role of chief judge, but it is still in its place. Because the answers are not convincing. Two days later, the conclusion comes, shaped like a typical decision by the British judiciary.

“There is only one reasonable conclusion that I can come to. It is that Dr. Wright is a massive liar.”

It says.

Everyone who was present in the war room saw that Wright had no good explanation. The conclusion was therefore no surprise.

Says Ager-Hanssen. Wright has not responded to DN’s inquiries about the matter.

Christen Ager-Hanssen wearing the Judge’s wig on September 22, 2023

On October 19, 2023 Craig Wright files his Third Witness Statement in which he gives his view on what happened during the Mock Practice Trial.

In around December 2022, Mr Christen Ager-Hanssen (Christen) was appointed Group Chief Executive Officer of nChain UK Ltd.

From January 2023, Christen began taking an active role in the claims I am involved in, and he appointed Zafar Ali KC (Zafar) as a consultant. Acting on my behalf, Christen and Zafar then appointed Travers Smith LLP to take over the conduct of the above claims from Ontier LLP.

Subsequent to Zafar’s involvement, I became concerned that Zafar was not following my instructions and that I was not being kept informed of the conduct and progress of the claims.

Shortly before 21 September 2023, my wife, Ramona Ang, and I were invited by telephone by Christen and Zafar to attend a two-day meeting at an office in London 6–7 Market Place London, W1W 8AF. It was explained to us that the purpose of the meeting was to discuss the strategy in the ongoing litigation.

I liaised with my EA, Brigi Gruber, to put this time in my diary. Her correspondence with Ted Loveday (a junior barrister working with Zafar) is at Exhibit CSW2. This has been redacted by my lawyers to remove privileged information.

On 21 September 2023, as Ramona and I were going to the meeting, we briefly saw and met Zafar at a coffee shop next to the office. Zafar appeared to be highly agitated and said he could not meet with us, but we would see him the next day.

On 22 September 2023, Ramona and I attended the meeting. On arriving at the venue, we were shown to a room which was laid out, in part, like a courtroom. On one side of the room was Zafar, Ted Loveday (a junior barrister working with Zafar), Khrystyna Khanas (a solicitor Christen hired) and Christen. Zafar and Ted were in a wig and gown. Zafar instructed me to sit on the other side of the room. In addition to Ramona, Stefan and Fawn Labrie were in attendance. At each seat was a lever arch file with documents from disclosure. I understand my solicitors have asked Stefan at nChain if nChain has a copy of this, but they do not have one. I wasn’t allowed to retain a copy. When asking Stefan for the lever arch, he also provided to my solicitors with a screenshot of a WhatsApp chat and certain photographs, which are in Exhibit CSW3.

I was then instructed by Zafar that I would be questioned by him on my evidence; Ted was to be my representative. I would like to emphasise that I was shocked and confused. I had been told that a judge would be present but thought he would be an additional advisor on the claim (in the same way Zafar explained to me he is a judge). I did not know this was going to happen or why it was happening. I recall questioning whether this should be taking place, but I was told by Zafar that he was a King’s Counsel and, hence, knew more than me.

Zafar then instructed me to stand and bow while a man dressed in the form of a judge’s robe entered the room and took a table in the room. I was told that he was a judge, but I have my doubts. I wasn’t introduced to him and was not told his name. Zafar then aggressively questioned me, with the questions premised on me not being Satoshi Nakamoto and that I had forged documents in the litigation. I do not recall the specific questions which I was asked or the documents to which I was taken. During the course of the cross-examination, I maintained that I was Satoshi Nakamoto and I did not forge the documents. I think the questioning went on for 90 minutes. After this, the man in the judge’s robes explained that he would reserve judgment.

Following the meeting, Christen approached Ramona and me. A heated exchange ensued, in which I recall Christen explaining that I would lose the case and that I should admit that I did not create Bitcoin and was not Satoshi Nakamoto. When I refused, I was told that I should amend my evidence and explain that, while I was Satoshi Nakamoto, I had re-created lost documents to be used as evidence. Again, I refused.

I also recall that Christen also spoke to Stefan, explaining that if he maintained his witness evidence, he would be liable for perjury. He encouraged Stefan to withdraw or amend his evidence.

Following this exchange, Ramona explained to me that Christen spoke to her directly. When speaking with Ramona, Christen adjusted his tone, explaining that only he could help me and offering a lunch with Ramona alone so that a ‘deal’ could be done. From this, I infer that Christen was referring to him acquiring the shares and/or intellectual property of nChain. Ramona initially entertained this suggestion of a lunch meeting, and a lunch meeting was arranged for the following Wednesday.

On 24 September 2023, Christen invited Ramona and I to again attend the office, where a judgment would be handed down. I initially refused, but Christen insisted that I had to come. Again, Zafar and Ted, as well as Stefan Matthews, were in attendance, and the room was laid out as a courtroom. The man dressed as a judge attended and proceeded to read from a script for approximately 20 minutes, giving judgment. In general, the script said that I was a fraud, although I do not recall the specifics. Again, following the meeting, Christen applied pressure on me and Stefan to change our evidence.

The following day, 25 September, I was told by Ramona that Christen subsequently contacted her directly. Here, he repeated that I was a fraud and sent her screenshots of my browsing history (which have subsequently been published on social media). Copies of the screenshots he sent her are at Exhibit CSW4. Christen obtained these from my Wright International Investments UK Ltd laptop. He used a policy install attached to software from nChain Ltd to push unauthorised changes to my system. The access to my laptop was reported to nChain and the police. The Surrey police report
reference number is 9786/2509. The disclosure provider instructed by my solicitors, KLD, has captured the search history I used.

For the avoidance of doubt, I conducted internet searches following the service of COPA’s expert report on the authenticity of the electronic documents. They were made to understand and test the allegations made therein. These were necessary and directly associated with responding to the COPA (Madden) forensic report.

On 26 September 2023, Ramona declined Christen’s invitation for lunch.

During the week commencing 25 September 2023, following notification of the unauthorised access to my laptop, nChain commissioned an investigation. Following this preliminary investigation, a board meeting was called. I have been told that Christen was dismissed at this board meeting. I am not privy to the investigation (which is ongoing).

Following his dismissal, Christen started to publish on social media partial accounts of that set out above, including said screenshots.

What Craig Wright means with this last sentence is that Christen Ager-Hanssen started to leak confidential information like a maniac about Calvin Ayre, nChain and Craig Wright after he left nChain end of September. One of his most interesting leaks is the whistleblower report “The Fairway Brief” (published in full in the linked article).

A helpful timeline covering September 1, 2023 up till December 1, 2023, in which the Mock Practice Trial is mentioned in context to the rest of the Craig Wright related events (including Craig Wright creating forgeries), is provided by the Bitcoin Developers in their trial skeleton arguments (also called trial opening submissions), their last filing just before the start of the Joint Trial.

The Settlement Offer

Then there was this little interruption just before the Joint Trial because of a settlement offer by Craig Wright on January 24, 2024.

A quick summary of this event in three tweets:

1. Hook2. Line3. And “hard pass” sinker

The only thing actually interesting here is that we learn that just before the Joint Trial, all the forensic experts — indeed, of both parties — are agreeing with each other about Craig’s evidence.

From COPA’s blog:

Expert Witnesses for Both COPA and Craig Wright Agree — Wright’s Newly Found Documents are Recent Creations

Posted on January 24, 2024

COPA has introduced new forensic evidence that definitively proves the inauthenticity of several documents that Craig Wright considers crucial to his claim that he is the founder of bitcoin. This was not only the conclusion of the expert COPA retained to forensically examine Wright’s documents, but the conclusion of the expert Wright retained as well.

In October 2023, Craig Wright presented previously undisclosed evidence in his defense during the lawsuit brought by the Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA) in The High Court of Justice of England and Wales. These digital documents, which Wright claims to have discovered on two USB drives inside a drawer in his house in September 2023, were intended to back his assertion that he is Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin.

On December 23 2023, Mr Justice Mellor reviewed this evidence submitted by Craig Wright and determined that the evidence would be allowed to be presented in trial given claims of their centrality to the question of whether Wright is indeed Satoshi Nakamoto. In his judgment, Mr Justice Mellor quoted Wright’s own argument. Wright said that:

‘The short point is that if the Additional Documents are authentic, they are likely determinative of the Identity Issue in Dr Wright’s favour.’

However, today’s published summary of the findings (covering expert evidence from witnesses for both COPA and Wright) proves that the additional documents produced by Wright have been forged. Some of the key evidence includes:

Wright’s “Bitcoin White Paper”
The bitcoin whitepaper was originally published on October 31, 2008. Wright claims he wrote the bitcoin white paper using LaTeX word processing software. Examination of the metadata by both parties’ experts led them to conclude (and agree) that, contrary to Wright’s assertion, the whitepaper was written and produced in OpenOffice, not LaTeX. Even if the whitepaper had been written in LaTeX — and even Wright’s own expert agrees it was not — the file that Wright relies on could not have been produced by that software until after 2009, after the bitcoin whitepaper was originally published. In light of Wright’s assertion that he created these files and has been in sole possession of these files since they were created, suggesting that he is responsible for — or at least aware of — their inauthenticity.

Wright’s 2007 Computer “Time Capsule”
Wright presented a file that he said was a “time capsule” captured from his computer in October 2007, containing various pieces of evidence that he said supported his claims. However, experts found proof that the ‘time capsule’ was subsequently edited in September 2023 to add, modify and delete relevant files. These modifications were done with the computer clock set back to 31 October 2007, in order to backdate the most obvious resulting digital artifacts. Wright did not account for all digital artifacts, however, and many traces remained. In reality, the additions to the ‘time capsule’ were made over the course of September 17–19, 2023. The usernames “CSW” and “Craig S Wright” were recovered from deleted files connected to these changes.

Chat GPT Forgery
A deleted file was recovered which suggests that the fabricated evidence presented by Wright was created with the help of Chat GPT. The deleted file contained part of the content of a document Wright provided and began with the words “Certainly, here’s the LaTeX code for Section 7, which covers Recommendations.” Expert witnesses recreated this exact response from Chat GPT by asking it “Are you able to output some template latex code for section 7 which relates to recommendations?”

The list of 20 forgeries that the Court allowed COPA to present can be found here.

Oral openings in the trial will begin on February 5.

With that said, let’s dive into a few highlights of the Joint Trial.

The Joint Trial

Trial was, after an initial delay of three weeks due to Craig Wright last minute filing a new set of ‘Satoshi evidence’ (cough, forgeries, cough), which Justice Mellor happily allowed, postponed from the original start date of January 15, 2024 and ultimately planned between February 5, 2024 and March 15, 2024.

This new planning included a one week gap between March 4, 2024 and March 8, 2024 for making up, and timely filing, the closing submissions.

The four King’s Counsels that made it all possible for parties in the court room in London in front of Justice Mellor:

Left, for COPA and Bitcoin devs: Jonathan Hough & Alexander Gunning
Right, for Craig Wright: Lord Anthony Grabiner & Craig Orr

February 5–13, 2024 Days 1 to 7 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

After the opening shots on Monday the 5th, a long and at times exhausting process of cross examining Craig Wright by Jonathan Hough KC started.

It takes many viewers either live or watching the video live stream, provided by the court to individuals who had subscribed for the video link service, a few days to understand what’s going on in the court room in London. Rest assured, this included the undersigned. To some it appeared even underwhelming what was happening, as all that Hough was doing was trying to get reconfirmations, and at times additional information, from Craig Wright about his arguments in his witness statements.

But except for an occassional “we dispute that, Dr Wright, let’s move on” or a dry and wry “that’s a lie, isn’t it, Dr Wright?” there was not really the fireworks going on that we know from American court movies and series like ‘Better Call Saul’, ’12 Angry Men’ and ‘Law And Order’. The side effect of this all was that the Craig Wright and BSV fans were thinking that Craig Wright was firmly in control of the court room dynamics, as he had confident answers to all Hough’s questions, and he hardly appeared to be in any legal trouble!

However, what was actually happening, which was only appreciated when one understands how UK court cases take place, was a process that Mark Hunter, main host of the Dr Bitcoin podcast, described as “Death by a Thousand Cuts”. Craig Wright was falling in the trap that he had set up himself, with open eyes. All his lies, deception and forgeries that were mapped out and filed in the period before the trial got reconfirmed one by one in front of Justice Mellor. In hindsight, this must have been nothing short of shocking to watch for him.

Not that Justice Mellor showed any of this, though.

And talking about the Dr Bitcoin podcast, we provided well appreciated weekly updates about what was going on in the court room in London.

https://medium.com/media/df43e098e6d146e59dea894ea7795a80/href

February 14, 2024 Day 8 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

Then, the now legendary Day 8 of the trial arrives. Please read my article “The IT Security Guy v A Random Lawyer: Who Is Satoshi Again?” for a detailed description of the main event of the day: Craig Wright being examined by Alexander Gunning KC about his coding knowledge. Hint: that didn’t end well.

“Craig is now being asked (by the lawyer of the Bitcoin developers) about the initial Bitcoin source code, line by line. 😬

Oh my god. This is EPIC. Craig Wright is being educated how CheckBlock works on request of Justice Mellor because Craig made several mistakes. 😂

YES. It happened. Craig Wright got completely stuck at a line in the code that he doesn’t understand:

‘static const unsigned int’

And Craig is now completely lost.

Game over.

The neverending silence of Craig Wright at the ‘static const unsigned int’ code, his handwaving that came to a grinding halt halfway in the air, then after another painful silence the humble admission that he doesn’t know how to explain it… EPIC.

Craig is now shown all the corners of the court room. The Bitcoin developers’ lawyer has almost completely silenced Craig Wright, who’s tone is now almost humble, only agreeing to the lessons that he’s being learned. What an amazing sight this is. History being made here!”

February 15, 2024 Day 9 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

Since cross examination of Craig Wright took slightly longer as planned, it is only on Day 9 of the trial that Craig’s fact witnesses are being questioned.

Witness Ignatius Pang will always be remembered for the Batman Lego box anecdote. Craig Wright might have mentioned ‘blockchain’ in relationship to this Lego box, Pang vaguely remembered on the stand. Well, he wasn’t actually on the stand in a physical sense, but on screen with a video link.

Memes flying again

Another witness this day, Robert Jenkins, also on the video link, impressed (not so much) by lying about a TimeCoin draft whitepaper that he claims to have seen. Thing is, he was also witness in Oslo, Norway during the hodlonaut v Wright trial AND Jenkins wrote a witness statement under oath in the COPA case, in which he never mentioned anything TimeCoin related (which is a known Craig Wright forgery on top also).

My friends from What The Finance reported this notable moment live from the court room in London.

COPA: Why is there a Timecoin note in a paper in front of you?
Robert Jenkins: I thought they had to be clearly understood.
COPA: Who told you that these details need to be understood?
Robert Jenkins: …
COPA: You have not mentioned Timecoin here or in any evidence in the hodlonaut trial. What brings your recollection now?

COPA is killing the witness right now. Based on the point made about the witness having notes in front of him of things he never mentioned in Norway. He seems completely schooled by the opposition and the cross examination from Lord Grabiner has backfired spectacularly.

COPA: Is it your position that you remembered Timecoin and took down that note during our questioning today?
Robert Jenkins: Yes.
COPA: I simply put it to you that this is not true.

Then it’s the turn of a witness called Shoaib Yousuf, a person that worked with Craig Wright in 2012/2013 to set up the Hotwire group, a group of companies that were supposed to do all kinds of Bitcoin related business in Australia. However, Yousuf painfully found out during questioning that Craig had been doing a fair bit of tax fraud with his name involved. What I reported on Twitter on that day:

Shoaib Yousuf just now was a totally sick testimonial. He was being made aware of the AU$250,000 ATO fraud that Craig was executing in 2012–2013 with his name attached. Otherwise nothing more to say as “Craig might have been Satoshi”, of course also no physical evidence. The fraud was Craig claiming to the ATO that Yousuf (who considers Craig his “friend & mentor”) had done work worth $250k on his supercomputers in 2012/2013 tax year. Yousuf denied he ever did work on any supercomputers, and since January 2013 he was working in Malaysia anyway. Yousuf was turning paler and paler by the minute, he wanted to be done with it asap.

February 16, 2024 Day 10 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

On this day, Danielle DeMorgan (Craig Wright’s sister, she remembered Craig Wright wearing a ninja costume when he was around 18 years old) and Cerian Jones (about Craig’s patents) take the stand for questioning. Not exactly groundbreaking testimonials, if you ask me.

CoinDesk saw a headline in the Ninja Anecdote

But in my humble opinion, the most notable thing happening this day is Mark Archbold taking the stand, and denying that Craig Wright ever did something with a token system at Lassiter Casino, which Craig Wright had lied about in Oslo, Norway 1,5 years earlier during the hodlonaut trial.

Source transcript Craig Wright in Oslo, Norway 2022: YouTubehttps://medium.com/media/cb60e6be9d737f853473bce42771a499/href

February 19, 2024 Day 11 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

David Bridges (CIO of Qudos Bank, thinks Craig could be Satoshi but has no physical evidence), Max Lynam (a cousin of Craig Wright, ditto, has no physical evidence) and Stefan Matthews, three witnesses that we knew already from the hodlonaut v Wright trial in September 2022, on the stand today.

I was not able to follow the whole day myself, however BitMEX Research was and wrote, among more, the following in their article about Stefan Matthews.

The next moment we want to highlight was when a transcript was shown to the court of a discussion between Mr Ager Hanssen and Stefan Matthews. In the transcript, Mr Matthews stated:

“Because we’re heading into a fucking train wreck on 15th of January.”

At the time of the transcript, 15th January was the expected start date of this trial. The following exchange then occurred.

Q. Did you say those words to Mr Ager Hanssen, as far as you’re aware?

A. I may have. I don’t have specific recollection, but I may have.

As this response was not absolutely clear, a recording was then played to the court, when Mr Matthews could clearly be heard saying the above words. Mr Matthews was then questioned on this and responded as follows:

Q. Do you recall saying, ”We’re heading into a fucking train wreck on the 15th of January”?

A. It definitely sounds like my voice.

Q. Was 15 January the original start date for this trial?

A. I don’t know. I thought it was 5 February. No, you’re right . You’re right , yeah.

Q. That’s what you were referring to in that conversation by describing ”heading into a fucking train wreck on the 15th of January”, isn’t it ?

A. Well, you’ve got to remember that Ager Hanssen was in Spain at the time, and he spent two days telling me how uncooperative Craig was with the development of his strategy and plan. So, it didn’t look good, the way that they were presenting things to me.

This is the point when we broke for lunch.

Not at this point in time, nor earlier when he mentioned the “fucking trainwreck”, Stefan Matthews could not in any way predict how much he nailed that trainwreck prediction…

February 20, 2024 Day 12 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

Not a very interesting day, to be fair. We saw the last part of Stefan Matthews’ cross examination till lunch time, and after lunch we saw Steve Lee of Spiral being questioned about why Meta left COPA rather last minute just before trial (because they don’t do anything with blockchain and/or crypto currencies or stablecoins anymore, it’s that simple).

Before trial, BSV fans were making wild guesses why Meta was not a COPA member anymore.

Source: Twitter

There was also Professor John MacFarlane, a LaTex specialist who developed the Pandoc tool, mentioned to be on the stand, but I don’t remember seeing him. I do remember though that last minute there were a few witnesses pulled from the list to be questioned by Craig Wright’s counsel.

February 21, 2024 Day 13 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

This Wednesday would quickly become my second favorite day of the whole COPA v Wright trial. Because two of my favorite Bitcoin Original Gangsters were on the stand: Adam Back live in court, and Martti Malmi on the video link.

And they did not disappoint.

Adam Back, Martti Malmi

Please read my article “How Adam Back And Martti Malmi Killed Craig Wright’s Hope Of Ever Winning The COPA Case” for a detailed deep dive, including their witness statements, never seen before emails and full transcripts of their court sessions, of the cross examinations of Adam Back and Martti Malmi on this day.

Another very notable event on this very same day was the video animation about Craig Wright creating his LaTex forgery, a video that the Bitcoin developers had assembled using the extremely detailed logfiles of Craig’s Overleaf account. The resulting timelapse video covering four days in 70 seconds was shown in the court room in London.

Two days later, the video was posted on Twitter.

ᗪIGIᑎᗩᑌT on Twitter: "How Wright forged a LaTeX version of the #Bitcoin whitepaper on Overleaf during the end of last year. pic.twitter.com/8rNLkpaVeA / Twitter"

How Wright forged a LaTeX version of the #Bitcoin whitepaper on Overleaf during the end of last year. pic.twitter.com/8rNLkpaVeA

February 22, 2024 Day 14 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

The founder of altcoin Zcash, Zooko Wilcox-O’Hearn, testified on this day, and he described his connection with Satoshi Nakamoto as founded in mutual interest in cryptography. Furthermore, he explained their shared interests in decentralization and privacy. When asked about his limited involvement in the early stages of the bitcoin project, Zooko said with a smile, “You underestimate my laziness.

But the hot issue of this session was the fact that Craig Wright had declared in his witness statement that he had transferred bitcoins to Zooko in 2009. Zooko’s response however: “No, didn’t happen. Satoshi Nakamoto is my hero, I would have remembered. Besides, at that time Bitcoin was Windows only, and I did not have any Windows device to enable to me to even run Bitcoin.

Oops.

February 23, 2024 Day 15 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

Craig Wright is back on the stand, now to answer questions about a series of Tulip Trust related forgeries. A transcript of the day is delivered by What The Finance.

What The Finance on Twitter: "🧵Day 15 - #COPA vs Craig Wright (#Satoshi Identity Trial)CSW is back on the stand today after a bruising week of several testimonies from #Bitcoin developers that disprove his claims.This trial has shown that even if those core developers knew who #Satoshi really was, they... pic.twitter.com/0Jwmq6zuQA / Twitter"

🧵Day 15 - #COPA vs Craig Wright (#Satoshi Identity Trial)CSW is back on the stand today after a bruising week of several testimonies from #Bitcoin developers that disprove his claims.This trial has shown that even if those core developers knew who #Satoshi really was, they... pic.twitter.com/0Jwmq6zuQA

And the whole day is summarized in their article “The Time of Reckoning: Day 15 COPA vs Wright Trial”. Worthy of a read, as always!

Mark Hunter and the undersigned review the whole trial week in the Dr Bitcoin podcast, Bare and Uncut (Part 3).

https://medium.com/media/fa5a06bf7aa286518ec391aceef6c709/href

February 26–27, 2024 Day 16 to 17 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

On these days, the forensic experts, and mainly their figurehead Patrick Madden, are being cross examined. Craig Wright fans were excited to learn that COPA’s counsel Bird & Bird had helped Madden to ‘finesse’ the forensic reports during several meetings at the Bird & Bird office, as it was their understanding that this was a complete destruction of the professional independance of Madden, reducing his reports to moot paperwork and ready for the legal dustbin, as if no forgery by Craig Wright had ever happened.

But that’s not how it works, of course. It takes a lot more to completely discredit a set of forensic reports on its content.

When Madden was questioned about why he didn’t hire an assistent (“that would take too much time away from an already tight schedule with a massive amount of forgeries to work through”) and had accepted the help of an assistent provided by Bird & bird, he explained:

W: “So all 1300 pages of your report are all you?”
M: “It’s more than that in the end, but yes.”
W: “Did you have an office at Bird and Bird?”
M: “No I went there 3 or 4 times during this period”
W: “Only 3 or 4 times?”
M: “I spoke to them many times but only visited their offices 3 or 4 times. I would detail the content of my report up to that point and they would be recording that and making notes. I could have access to a room when I did visit if I needed to”
W: “How did they turn notes into a report form?”
M: “Well after a few times of putting appendices together [we both] got the flavour of the process very well.”
W: “I’ll put it to you that they [Bird & Bird] were essentially writing the report for you.”
M: “No, they helped with the assembly, but the words were all mine.”

So Madden’s professional independance was never in any danger after all.

Noteworthy also: at the end of the day on February 26, 2024 Shoosmiths humbly admitted they were forced by Craig’s former counsel ONTIER to bring a forged email thread with Craig Wright on the table in front of the judge. COPA’s counsel announced they will have Patrick Madden write a forensic report about the forged email thread, and an emergency hearing about the situation is scheduled for Friday March 1, 2024.

February 28, 2024 Day 18 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

On this day, Professor Sarah Meiklejohn for COPA and Mr ZeMing Gao for Craig Wright are being cross examined. Most of the discussions are about the failed 2016 signing sessions, and as it appears, Gao agrees with most points that are raised by Meiklejohn, that it is possible to fool and fake a signing, and that private signing sessions are basically worthless.

Source: Twitter

Quote from the readworthy article that Christen Ager-Hanssen is posting.

So, here’s what went down in the craziest courtroom drama featuring Craig Wright, the dude who continues to claim he made Bitcoin. This whole shebang has been unfolding in London, where the big question is: Is Craig Wright really Satoshi Nakamoto, aka the Bitcoin boss? Grab your popcorn, ’cause this story’s got more twists than a pretzel.

First off, Wright’s own former legal eagles at Ontier are calling BS on some emails his wife tried to play as evidence. These emails were supposed to be the smoking gun proving Wright had his hands in the Bitcoin cookie jar way back when. But nope, turns out those emails might as well have been written in invisible ink because Ontier says they’re as fake as a three-dollar bill.

February 29, 2024 Day 19 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

Day off.

March 1, 2024 Day 20 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

This was almost also a day off due to the last minute cancellations by Craig Wright of several cross examinations, but this day could now instead be used for an emergency hearing and cross examinations of Craig Wright and forensic expert Patrick Madden related to the ONTIER emails that Shoosmiths reported on Monday February the 26th. A detailed report about this day in my article “A Doom Loop Of Lying”, how Craig Wright is once more perverting the course of justice with a clear cut case of fraud upon the court during the COPA v Wright trial.

One of the most notable quotes of Craig Wright during this day: “My email is so shared now it’s not funny, I noticed on the weekend people like Arthur van Pelt sending files that should not have been public, from COPA.

https://medium.com/media/f11800b16462a8a7b259b21d8337746a/href

March 4, 2024 — March 11, 2024

Six working days off. In this week, both parties work hard to finalize their closing submissions, which should be handed to Justice Mellor by the end of the week.

Meme by What The Finance

March 12–14, 2024 Day 21 to 23 COPA v Wright Joint Trial

The last three days (four days were initially reserved, but Friday the 15th was not needed after all) were occupied by the closing arguments of both parties. Instead of quoting from the transcripts, I will quote from the written closing submissions that were filed in the previous week, and that became available in the COPA DropBox on March 12, 2024.

Unfortunately, the closing submissions of Craig Wright were not made public yet at the moment of writing.

Pre-amble: Closing Submissions

  1. These Closing Submissions are written by way of expanding on COPA’s opening Skeleton Argument. The original wording from the opening Skeleton Argument remains in black, with the additions shown in red. The paragraph numbering has therefore changed. Where a section can now be ignored, this is indicated.
  2. Following the evidence in this trial, it is clearer than ever — clear beyond doubt — that Dr Wright is not Satoshi Nakamoto. He did not write the Bitcoin White Paper, produce the Bitcoin Code or implement the Bitcoin system. The Identity Issue should be resolved in favour of COPA and the Developer defendants to the BTC Core Claim.
  3. Dr Wright has been shown to have lied on an extraordinary scale, and it is difficult to think of a precedent for what he has done. He has invented an entire biographical history, producing one tranche after another of forged documents to support it. Even when the extent of his dishonesty and forgery was exposed to him in cross-examination, he doubled down, forging further documents during the trial, blaming a litany of characters, asserting implausible technical excuses and suggesting a vast and ever-growing conspiracy to frame him, all in an effort to evade his own responsibility. His developing excuses became comical at times, but as was made clear in opening Dr Wright’s conduct is no laughing matter. He used his time in the witness box to defame, blame and attack anyone he could identify to defend his position, including even his own expert witnesses and a series of law firms previously engaged by him. In short, he has attempted a very serious fraud upon the Court. To give fair warning, COPA will ask after judgment that the papers be referred to the Director of Public Prosecutions for consideration of prosecution for the offences of perjury and perverting the course of justice.

AND BOOM.

COPA just announced that they will request Crown Prosecution Service that this case will be ramped up to a criminal prosecution of Craig Wright.

Beforehand, I was hoping to see several pointy debunks back in the closing ceremony. One of them was my all time favorite ‘Microsoft patch Tuesday’, an early Craig Wright debunk that I did five years ago, in 2019, way before this case even started. And I was not disappointed. COPA devoted a whole section to Craig Wright’s ‘Microsoft patch Tuesday’ lie.

Early Events in the History of Bitcoin

477. Patch Tuesday: In a blog post of 6 April 2019 (and in other public statements), Dr Wright has claimed that Microsoft Patch Tuesday (the monthly issuing of software patches) caused a shut-down of the Bitcoin network directly after the creation of the Genesis block (which was on 3 January 2009). He has claimed that he addressed this by building a domain in the week between 3 and 10 January 2009. The problem with this story is that, in January 2009, Microsoft Patch Tuesday was on 13 January. Dr Wright’s attempt to explain away this clear error is important and is addressed in a separate section below.

Accounts given by Dr Wright about Patch Tuesday

500. Dr Wright gave a series of accounts of events in the early life of Bitcoin in interviews and articles. In an interview, article and a chapter of “Satoshi’s Vision”, he told a story of the Bitcoin system crashing between 3 January and 9 January 2009 as a result of the occurrence of Patch Tuesday. He said that, after this happened, he had had to build a domain to prevent problems recurring. See:

(a.) transcript of interview of 24 April 2019;
(b.) blog post of 6 April 2019, “Two Steps Forward One Step Back”; and
(c.) Satoshi’s Vision at p14–15.832

Cross-examination of Dr Wright on Patch Tuesday

501. Commenting on the statement in the transcript of his April 2019 video interview “Before the 10th of January, I had to build a domain”, Dr Wright said that it should have been “rebuild” and that he “already had a domain.” However, he repeated his account that the problem which afflicted his network occurred between 3 and 10 January 2009.

502. It was then put to him that Patch Tuesday in January 2009 had taken place on Tuesday 13 January. Dr Wright replied that he did not know whether or not that was true, but he said that he had a WSUS server that would implement patches on a schedule set by him.

503. On being challenged that Microsoft’s Patch Tuesday update notification for 13 January 2009 covered both Windows Update (WU) and Windows Server Update Services “Dr Craig Wright explains the origins of Bitcoin” 24 April 2019. It is unclear whether Dr Wright was questioning the accuracy of the transcript or purporting to correct an error in what he said during the interview. Either way, it is evident from the video recording itself that he said ‘build’ (WSUS), Dr Wright developed his story further, saying that he was a member of the Microsoft Developer Network (“not one of the every day plebs out there”) and had access to pre-release material after internal testing and beta testing by Microsoft. He described members of the MSDN programme as “test guinea pigs first, it’s like a beta programme…” Dr Wright stated that “Patch Tuesday” was a generic reference to Microsoft’s updates, even if a WSUS server was pulling patches on its own schedule.

Inconsistencies and flaws in Dr Wright’s accounts

504. As can be seen, Dr Wright’s story on Patch Tuesday has changed every time its flaws have been pointed out to him. He began by saying that “Patch Tuesday” (a recognised term for an event affecting MS users generally on a designated Tuesday each month), which he described as a “horrible invention” had crashed the systems. When confronted with the point that the dates did not work, he said that as a WSUS user he scheduled his own updates. When confronted with the point that the update notification for 13 January 2009 affected WSUS users, he claimed to be a member of the MSDN.

505. There are myriad problems and inconsistencies with Dr Wright’s evolving account of events.

505.1. No WSUS server (6 April 2019 blogpost). The first version of the Patch Tuesday story in Dr Wright’s blogpost of 6 April 2019 made no mention of a WSUS server: “The original machines were a group of workstations and not a domain.” Furthermore, the explanation for the simultaneous shutdown implied separately patched machines, not a cluster of machines with updates managed locally by a WSUS server: “I had configured all of the machines with the same time zones, even those in different countries. They all shut down to patch at the same time.”

505.2. WSUS in response to Patch Tuesday (24 April 2019 interview). In the 24 April 2019 interview Dr Wright appears to describe building a domain in response to the problems said to have been caused by “Microsoft making all machines turn off at once”. Similarly, in his 19 June 2019 interview Dr Wright described how he was running “a bunch of standalone Windows XP machines”. He described how in response to the Patch Tuesday shutdown he “set up … WSUS servers. … I had to set up a full domain just to keep these Windows XP machines running so that we could say that they didn’t actually all shut down at the same time. And I had to have rolling intervals”.

505.3. WSUS from the start (Wright 11). In contrast, in Wright 11 Dr Wright stated that his servers were set up with WSUS from the start, that the Bitcoin nodes were running as a service and with updates from Microsoft during the week some did not restart.

505.4. WSUS integration in response to Patch Tuesday (Initial cross examination). Dr Wright’s initial position in cross-examination was that he responded to the supposed Bitcoin shutdown by integrating his Windows XP machines with his existing WSUS server. “No, I already had a domain. I hadn’t had the Windows XP machines on the domain. So what we’re talking about there is, I had a domain but I needed to integrate these systems.”

505.5. WSUS from the start plus MSDN pre-release updates (Later cross examination). In order to explain how Microsoft’s Patch Tuesday updates could have shut down the Bitcoin machines over a week earlier than 13 January 2009, Dr Wright’s position then became that the machines were already on a WSUS server distributing pre-release Microsoft updates according to a schedule under Dr Wright’s control.

505.6. Patch Tuesday just a name? Seeking to explain his anachronistic references to Patch Tuesday having caused disruption in the first week, Dr Wright’s response in cross-examination was that Patch Tuesday is a generic industry term for Microsoft updates regardless of when a local WSUS server may be configured to distribute them: “It’s called Patch Tuesday even when it happens on a Friday”. However, in his 19 June 2019 video interview Dr Wright said:

“Anyone remember Patch Tuesday? So that was another reason Bitcoin before the current Blockchain turned off, apart from crashing, literally on that Tuesday night everything updated, turned off and restarted…”

505.7. Finally there is a contradiction between Dr Wright’s reply evidence that “I needed to travel between locations to ensure the servers were running correctly, and in the first week, this was not possible” and his statement in the 19 June 2019 video interview that he was driving back and forth to Bagnoo in that week in order to fix the problems.

506. It is quite clear that, not only can Dr Wright not get his story straight, but that he has changed it several times as each excuse is debunked. There is also no evidence of him being on the Microsoft Developer Network, nor any proof that even if he was, these updates would have been applied to him within that network. It is therefore a good example of Dr Wright trying to bolster his origin story by attempting to add in supposedly complementary detail to what was a known public event (the lack of mining between 3 to 9 January). However, the detail he added was wrong. The real Satoshi would know what actually happened and have a cogent reason for it.

The content of my article The Wei Dai Lies also made it to the final cut of the COPA closing submissionsAnd I am a footnote, with a footnote, in the closing submissions lol

On a more serious note, it is important for the (basically unrelated, and not halted) Pineapple Hack case with the Bitcoin developers involved, that Justice Mellor is aware of the “fiction that is Tulip Trust” (quote Hough KC during trial). So let’s have a look what the closing submission documents tell us about the, indeed totally fictional, Tulip Trust.

Unsurprisingly, COPA devotes a whole chapter to the Tulip Trust. Paragraph 59 summarizes nicely the current situation around Tulip Trust.

It became apparent from the course of Dr Wright’s evidence that the Tulip Trust is an invention, the details of which have been refashioned successively for the ATO investigation, the Kleiman proceedings, the Granath proceedings and the present case.

And let’s not forget that not only ATO (“We do not accept that the Seychelles Trust existed as a matter of law or fact”) and court Florida (“The totality of the evidence in the record does not substantiate that the Tulip Trust exists.”) had already made their minds up with regards to the Tulip Trust, also Calvin Ayre is fully aware that the Tulip Trust is ‘a fiction’.

Because on September 23, 2023 he emailed to Craig Wright:

We have also verified that there is no complete paper trail evidencing the trust owning any tokens. This after nearly a year of Zurich reviewing all the evidence you have. This means you cannot repay me the money you owe me for all the litigation to date. This means every cent spent on your cases is me pissing away my kids inheritance.” — The Tale Of A BSV Culture Shock (Part 1)

Based on the following closing submission entry about Tulip Trust of COPA, I fully expect that we can add Justice Mellor’s decision about Tulip Trust to the list of ATO, court Florida and Calvin Ayre.

The Tulip Trust

58. The supposed Tulip Trust, which formed part of Dr Wright’s story in the tax claims (and whose existence was doubted by the ATO67), features in Dr Wright’s narrative in these proceedings as well. His evidence is that he placed in this trust a number of assets, including his (unspecified) intellectual property and all Bitcoin mined by his companies since 2009, in order to keep them out of the reach of the ATO. He also claims that, under this structure, private keys linked to the blocks associated with Satoshi could only be accessed by assembling key slices (separated using a Shamir Scheme), held by various individuals responsible to the Trust and so gaining access to an encrypted drive.

59. In cross-examination, Dr Wright’s account of the Tulip Trust was hopelessly confused and contradictory. It was addressed in particular from {Day6/179:2} — {Day6/182:9} and {Day7/8:5}- {Day7/54:12}. It became apparent from the course of Dr Wright’s evidence that the Tulip Trust is an invention, the details of which have been refashioned successively for the ATO investigation, the Kleiman proceedings, the Granath proceedings and the present case.

60. A stark example of Dr Wright’s dishonesty in this respect is that, in seeking to defend previous statements that Dave Kleiman had never been a trustee of the supposed Tulip Trust, he told the Court in this case that he had sworn a declaration in the Kleiman proceedings containing a series of details which were unknown to him and which he later supposedly discovered to be untrue: see {Day7/15:25} — {Day7/26:4}. He even claimed that he had been compelled by a US magistrate to make positive statements of fact despite being in ignorance: {Day7/21:11}. He even claimed that he had sworn that he himself was a trustee while believing that there was no way he could be: {Day7/18:25} and {Day7/24:1} — {Day7/25:9}.

61. The materials provided to the ATO to demonstrate the existence of the Trust were the two versions of the supposed email (with trust document attached) from Mr Kleiman dated 24 June 2011 and 17 October 2014 respectively. A different Deed of Trust, dated 23 October 2012 and supposedly between Wright International Investments Ltd and Tulip Trading Ltd was relied upon by Dr Wright in the Kleiman litigation.

62. In the course of the ATO investigations, Dr Wright was asked to prove his control of several tranches of Bitcoin addresses, using the message signing feature of Bitcoin software. He failed to do so, and came up with a series of excuses, involving transfers and loss of keys. COPA will say that there are parallels between these and Dr Wright’s excuses for not providing comparable proof of his control of Bitcoin addresses linked to Satoshi. A further point to note is that Dr Wright told the ATO that Bitcoin in three addresses supposedly lent to him had not been spent and had been returned to Tulip Trust, including Bitcoin in an address known as 16cou. On 16 May 2019, the owner of that address signed a message on social media stating that the address did not belong to Satoshi or to Dr Wright and “Craig is a liar and a fraud”.

Now let’s take a few highlights from the Bitcoin developers closing submissions.

There is, of course, the unforgettable “unsigned integer” incident.

24. Satoshi Nakamoto often used “unsigned” integers in the Bitcoin code. The frequency of their use can be seen from a simple search in the principal software files for “unsigned int”. That reveals that Satoshi used unsigned integers over 100 times in the original main.cpp, main.h and bignum.h files alone.

Across the entirety of the original Bitcoin code they are used 294 times. Unsigned integers were commonly referenced in Satoshi’s contemporaneous emails. They were even alleged to form part of the Bitcoin File Format over which Dr Wright claimed copyright.

25. That being so, if Dr Wright was Satoshi Nakamoto he would know what an unsigned integer was. His blank expression when asked about the concept (in stark contrast to his immediate answers to other questions, he paused for about nine seconds after being asked to take a wild guess) is captured in the following section of the transcript for Day8:

“Q. And we can find that at {L9/247.1/1}. So that’s the GitHub reference that you have given and it’s taken us to the script.h file on GitHub; do you see that?
A. That is correct.
Q. And so we can see, at row 18, that is declaring a constant integer variable called “MAX_SCRIPT_ELEMENT_SIZE”; do you see that?
A. I do.
Q. Just out of curiosity, do you know what unsigned means in that?
A. I do. Basically it’s unsigned variable, it’s not an integer with — 
Q. With what?
A. It’s larger. I’m not sure how — I mean, on the stand here, I’m not sure how I’d say it, but — 
Q. Take a wild guess.
A. How I would describe it, I’m not quite sure. I know what it is.
Q. Okay.
A. I’m not terribly good when I’m trying to do things like this. Writing it down would be different.
Q. Well, do you recall you mentioned that you had a book by Professor Stroustrup?
A. I do.
Q. You haven’t disclosed that book, but you have disclosed three other books about C++, so I want to take you to one of those. It’s {L1/199/1}, and could we go to page 47 {L1/199/47}. Do you see that it explains that “unsigned” means that it cannot be negative?
A. Yes, I do understand that. Would I have thought of saying it in such a simple way? No.”

26. The book which Dr Wright had disclosed and to which he was taken was C++ For Dummies.

Another fine debunk from the Bitcoin developers is about Craig’s claim that he needed no less than 69 computers to start up with Bitcoin in January 2009. Read it, and weep, how the Bitcoin developers demolished that false story.

“The 69 computers

41. Dr Wright boasted of the wide array of computers that he was running at his home in Australia in his evidence-in-chief in the Kleiman proceedings. He suggested there that he was running 69 machines in four racks spread over his homes in Lisarow and Bagnoo at a monthly electricity cost of AU$11,000.

42. At Wright1 [=Craig Wright’s first witness statement] he appeared to suggest that he was in fact running 69 racks at those residences, but explained in cross-examination by COPA that he meant 69 computers in racks. At Wright1 he nevertheless went on to say that the “considerable electricity consumption associated with Bitcoin mining represented a significant expense for me, amounting to thousands of Australian dollars” and confirmed in cross-examination that he stood by the figures stated in Kleiman. He had previously made a similar claim (albeit of 67 computers) in a blog on 6 April 2019 and in a CoinGeek interview on 6 June 2019 (this time with 69 machines).

43. There were two significant problems with this evidence.

Problem 1: inconsistency with the known difficulty

44. First, and most pertinently for his attempt to pretend that he was Satoshi Nakamoto, Professor Meiklejohn pointed out that it would not have been necessary at that time for Dr Wright (if he were Satoshi) to run a setup of the kind that he described (whether 69 racks or 69 computers), and in fact he could not have been running such a setup in early 2009 or early 2010 as, if he had, it would have increased the difficulty considerably to that which was observed at the time.

45. Dr Wright responded to that setback at Wright9 by modifying his evidence to suggest that his machines were not dedicated to Bitcoin mining after all and that he was also validating blocks.

46. In cross-examination, he sought to develop that answer as follows:

“Q. Now, I’m putting this to you on the basis of the expert evidence of Professor Meiklejohn. It wouldn’t have been necessary to run a set up of this magnitude to mine Bitcoin in 2009 or early 2010, would it?
24 A. Of course it would. Ms — Professor Meiklejohn is misrepresenting Bitcoin mining and nodes. Section 5 of the White Paper doesn’t say that you solve hashing. Now, hashing is only one small component. The majority, at a low level like that, is actually validating ECDSA. ECDSA is a far more computationally intense process than hashing. So what we need to do is actually go through validation of blocks, checking, later running testnet as well, and ensuring that all of that process happens before you distribute the block. On top of that, I had to run multiple systems. Bitcoin was configured so that on a single C class, and I had a C class in each area, the 256 IP addresses in V4, or more in IP v6 would only act as a single node on the network. So even if you had 30 machines on a single location, they only broadcast as one node on the network. Now, that allowed me to have multiple systems, including the logging systems and the rest of the Timecoin server. All of that together was really the cost that I experienced.”

47. Leaving aside the swerve in Dr Wright’s evidence between his first and ninth statements and his oral evidence (and its flat inconsistency with his previous comments in his blog and on CoinGeek in 2019), there were three elements to Dr Wright’s contention that Satoshi Nakamoto was using a setup such as that described by Dr Wright.

a) First, that the setup was for the majority of the time “validating ECDSA”, which is to say validating the signature of the transactions in each block.

b) Second, that the setup was “running testnet”.

c) Third, that he was running “the Timecoin server”.

48. None of these contentions is true:

a) There were just 219 non-coinbase transactions (i.e. transactions containing ECDSA signatures) in the 32,489 blocks created up to the end of 2009. Typically, there were zero transactions per block. So the suggestion that Dr Wright’s machines were mostly engaged in validating signatures for the transactions in blocks is manifestly false. And it was disclaimed by Mr Gao in his cross-examination.

b) Nor can Dr Wright have been running testnet. Testnet did not exist until July 2010. Dr Wright suggested orally that he (as Satoshi) was running some previously undisclosed private version of Testnet. That cannot be true either. Testnet was an innovation introduced by Gavin Andresen: see {L6/290.3/1} in which Satoshi observed to Gavin Andresen on 30 July 2010:

“that test network was a really good idea of yours”.

c) The latter contention can also be discounted. Timecoin is a recent invention of Dr Wright’s (he did not mention it at all in the Kleiman proceedings), and one that he appears to have instructed his witnesses to corroborate artificially in their own live evidence. Moreover, his evidence as to his electricity consumption is plainly untrue for the reasons set out below.

Problem 2: inconsistency with known electricity consumption

49. The second problem with Dr Wright’s evidence that he was spending AU$11,000 per month on electricity is that it is contradicted by the electricity bills that he submitted as part of his 2008–2009 personal tax return. Thus:

a) Lisarow: the electricity bills were as follows:
i) for the period from 8 December 2008 to 18 January 2009: AU$373.19 plus GST;
ii) for the period from 18 January 2009 to 9 March 2009: AU$523.10 plus GST;
iii) for the period from 9 March 2009 to 9 June 2009 was about AU$798.48.

b) Bagnoo: the electricity bill for the period from 11 February 2009 to 8 May 2009 was less than AU$500.

50. Dr Wright’s answer to this evident contradiction was to contend that Lisarow was “three-phase that was on a separate switch” and billed separately to Information Defense Pty Ltd. That is vanishingly unlikely to be true.

a) There is no documentary evidence that his home in Lisarow was serviced by a three-phase electrical power distribution system. Although that it is not impossible, it was on a residential (not commercial or industrial) price plan.

b) As Dr Wright’s sister confirmed, but Dr Wright denied, at the relevant time the computers in his Lisarow house were set-up in a spare bedroom or living area at the house. That being so, it seems highly implausible that it was “on a separate switch”. Information Defense Pty Ltd was only registered on 29 January 2009, so cannot have been incurring the electricity consumption costs for the period prior to that date. Yet, the bills for the period prior to the registration of Information Defense are not consistent with AU$11,000 per month being spent on electricity.

d) In her deposition, Lynn Wright did not refer to any substantial set-up in Lisarow, suggesting that the main computer set-up (comprising just 4–5 laptops) was at Bagnoo.

51. In short, Dr Wright was not incurring substantial expense as a result of his electricity consumption, but more to the point if he were Satoshi Nakamoto he would know that would not have been required anyway: a desktop or two would have mined a lot of bitcoin. Indeed, Mr Bohm’s evidence was that he mined 100,000 bitcoins on what was a normal HP Compaq computer.

The Bombshell Ruling

And then, what literally no one expected, at the end of the day of Thursday March 14, 2024 Justice Mellor dropped — almost casually — the bombshell ruling that everyone in camp COPA hoped for.

MR JUSTICE MELLOR: Thank you.

Well, I thank all the parties for their written closing and oral arguments, and they’ve been very helpful indeed. They will require me to prepare a fairly lengthy written judgment, which will be handed down in due course. And for all those who have already been hassling my clerk as to when the judgment will be ready, the short answer is as follows: it will be ready when it’s ready and not before.
However, having considered all the evidence and submissions presented to me in this trial, I’ve reached the conclusion that the evidence is overwhelming. Therefore, for the reasons which will be explained in that written judgment in due course, I will make certain declarations which I am satisfied are useful and are necessary to do justice between the parties.
First, that Dr Wright is not the author of the Bitcoin White Paper.
Second, Dr Wright is not the person who adopted or operated under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto in the period 2008 to 2011.
Third, Dr Wright is not the person who created the Bitcoin System.
And, fourth, he is not the author of the initial versions of the Bitcoin software.
Any further relief will be dealt with in my written judgment. I will extend time for filing any appellant’s notice until 21 days after the form of order hearing, which will be appointed following the hand down of my written judgment and I ask the parties to seek to agree an order giving effect to what I have just stated. So I’m afraid, for any further information, you’ll have to wait for the written judgment.

What The Finance on Twitter: "🚨 BREAKING: Craig Wright is NOT Satoshi Nakamoto. 1) He did not author the #Bitcoin whitepaper2) He has no claim over the #Bitcoin code3) He is not the creator of #Bitcoin.Mr Justice Mellor in the High Court of Justice in London.WELCOME TO LAW pic.twitter.com/Cui9o35Tjy / Twitter"

🚨 BREAKING: Craig Wright is NOT Satoshi Nakamoto. 1) He did not author the #Bitcoin whitepaper2) He has no claim over the #Bitcoin code3) He is not the creator of #Bitcoin.Mr Justice Mellor in the High Court of Justice in London.WELCOME TO LAW pic.twitter.com/Cui9o35Tjy

Susan Woolley from court London confirmed Justice Mellor’s ‘decision’

And of course Mark Hunter and the undersigned did an emergency podcast for Dr Bitcoin — The Man Who Wasn’t Satoshi Nakamoto.

https://medium.com/media/364e15f30d2a6573962df91d1d67d807/href

On March 27, 2024 the court issued a written order in which they summarized Justice Mellor’s oral declarations of two weeks earlier, March the 14th.

Source: BitcoinDefense.org

The Press on The Ruling by Justice Mellor

Source: WiredSource: BBCSource: ForbesSource: The GuardianSource: CoinDeskSource: Rory’s Always On NewsletterSource: 4 New Square ChambersSource: ABC News Australia

Twitter user Humble_Bit did a wonderful thread introducing all the legal people involved with COPA, mixed with live photographs and other material. It’s just too good to not be included in full in this article with the highlights of the COPA v Wright Joint Trial.

Meet the COPA team defending the Bitcoin developers from Craig Wright and in a broader aspect, the open-source community from frivolous lawsuits.

Let’s dive right into it 🧵.

If you are following closely the trial, you might have heard of some names that keep getting mentioned almost on a daily basis on COPA’s side.

These are:
* Jonathan Hough KC
* Alexander Gunning KC
* Jonathan Moss

* Hough belongs to 4 New Square Chambers.
* Moss belongs to Hogwarth Chambers.

They are both COPA’s Counsel.

* Gunning belongs to One Essex Court.

He is the Developers Counsel, along with Beth Collett from 8 New Square.

If you find that a bit confusing, I hear you. “I thought it was Bird & Bird?”

COPA hired Bird & Bird LLP to represent them, while the Bitcoin Developers hired Macfarlanes LLP.

These companies then appear to have carefully chosen barristers to be the Counsel for the trial.

Here is the Dramatis Personae for the trial to help clarify:

Hough and Moss are a pretty good team at disassembling the witnesses and pressing down the convoluted narratives presented.

Gunning is more of the technical side of things. He can read code and delivered the now mythical unsigned integer question.

However, for such a complicated case, it seems like picking barristers from different places to work together, seems perhaps risky?

I mean, I think we are all aware of how skilled they are on what they do, but who makes sure they are all in the same page?

At times, there are up to 18 people on COPA’s side during trial. Who is keeping everything in order?

Also, I need to clarify that only people listed as Counsel can address the judge and the witnesses.

So technically, only 4 people from COPA’s side can talk officially in court.

It actually makes sense, you wouldn’t want over ten people all interrupting something a witness said, all at the same time.

Or different people asking only a single question. It would be confusing.

When I first started attending the trial, @bitnorbert was still busy live tweeting and I spent most of my time listening and understanding what was going on.

I quickly realised there was a centre figure for COPA. The Counsel always turned back to speak with him before starting. They would always come round and talk to each other even on short breaks.

He is also the one that keeps writing notes and handing them over to Counsel for further questions or clarifications.

I struggled to identify this person at first. He isn’t listed in the Dramatis Personae.

Who is he?

He has the most professional demeanour in court. Although most of the non-Counsel keeps busy with all sorts of things and at times seem unrelated to what is happening, this person only does pretty much one thing.

He listens.

He spends the entire time that people are addressing the court, listening.

He is by far, the most focused person. He always sits in the centre. Counsel is up front, following a ‘script’ with all the topics they want raised.

The Counsel appear to have studied this ‘script’ and focus on the questions and answers at hand.

But it seems it is this person, without the pressure of asking questions and with the ‘script’ also in mind that takes it all in.

During examination, his job seems to be that nothing is missed. To quickly adapt to what was said and pursue new lines of questioning that the Counsel might miss.

You might remember tweets about some commotion and notes being handed over to Counsel.

That’s him making a move.

A big one was probably when Mr Jenkins was being cross examined and out of nowhere without much context, he mentioned TimeCoin.

This person quickly realised what was happening, he was reading from a piece of paper in front of him. A note was written and handed over to Moss.

Moss was quick on the attack.

As I see it, this person is in charge. His name is not listed anywhere I could see. I asked other people attending the trial, they do not know his name.

He keeps a very low profile, but to me it is clear, he is the man behind the curtains.

He runs the show.

I am a bit of a photographer and I’ve captured almost everyone in this case as they come in and out of the building.

However, I don’t have a very clear shot of him, nor can I take a picture of what he does in court.

Outside, he is usually surrounded by a big team.

On one of the days, I approached him outside and asked if he would like me to take a picture of him. He politely declined.

At this point, I feel there is a story here about him. Much has been talked about the Counsel, but not so much about him.

After a lot of research, I finally found him.

His name is Phil Sherrell.

He is the Head of Bird & Bird London. It all makes sense now.

On the last cross examination of Craig, I wanted a picture of both Craig and Phil as they came out of the building. I wanted to capture the contrast.

I now addressed him by his name and begged him for a single headshot but yet again, he declined…

Maybe it is best this way, it also shows how different Craig and Phil are. Craig shows off, Phil keeps it down.

But make no mistake, the Bitcoin and open-source communities should know Phil Sherrell.

I ended up only taking a candid picture of him.

That day, Craig Wright couldn’t hide the face of defeat.

That day, Phil Sherrell couldn’t hide the face of victory.”

As it happens, on March 28, 2024 Phil Sherrell did a short interview with The Times, where he answered a few questions in the section “Lawyer of the Week”. One of the questions, the first, was about the COPA v Wright case.

Source: The Times

The Aftermath of The Ruling, by Faketoshi, his Friends, his former Friends and his Enemies

Craig Wright
We kick of this section with Craig Wright’s first (and so far only at the moment of writing, March 19, 2024) tweet since the start of the COPA v Wright Joint Trial.

Make no mistake, Craig took more than a day to digest the for him damning ruling, but he is fully aware he lost. Otherwise he would not consider his “options for appeal”.

Source: Twitter

Calvin Ayre
Calvin Ayre’s first tweet after he heard about the ruling of Justice Mellor:

And within 24 hours we find Calvin Ayre his follow up on Twitter . This appears to me as a “rat-leaving-the-sinking-ship” move.

Good bye everyone. This is my last post before I take off on an adventure I have been planning for the last year. I have now handed this account over to a team that will work with the BSV Blockchain Association, London Blockchain conference and other organizations dedicated to educating on how Enterprise Blockchain brings together and completes AI, IoTs, Web 3 and other areas of Big Data. I am proud of what I have done to save such an amazing piece of technology and look forward to watching it continue to grow.

Wladimir van der Laan
On a more personal note, looking at Wladimir van der Laan his immediate response: this is what has made my quest since 2019 (mapping out Craig Wright’s fraud, and reporting about it) more than worthwhile. Several Bitcoin developers, among them Wladimir van der Laan, have stepped away from Bitcoin development in recent years due to Craig Wright’s constant harrassment and bullying. Now Wladimir writes:

After years of gaslighting and harassment (I just noticed that my first post about this was from 2016, back when Gavin [Andresen] fell under his influence), I did not expect this much sanity from the legal system. […] Now that this is over, I might become more active in bitcoin development again. No promises though. The last few years have been difficult for me, for this reason and others. But it absolutely helps to have this out of the way.

Wladimir’s full blog post:

For those who don’t know who is Wladimir van der Laan; Wladimir was after Satoshi Nakamoto (January 2009 — December 2010) and Gavin Andresen (December 2010 — April 2014) the ‘Lead Maintainer’ of the Bitcoin project. A Bitcoin Lead Maintainer has the ability to not only write, review and approve Bitcoin source code changes, but also on top of that move them into the GitHub repository.

As said, in April 2014 Wladimir van der Laan (who was already active in Bitcoin development since 2011) took over the role of Lead Maintainer from Gavin Andresen, and he stepped down from that role in January 2021. In February 2023 Wladimir removed his own GitHub merge privileges, citing several reasons for that action, among them growing discomfort with legal harassment.

The 2016 incident that Wladimir refers to is when Gavin Andresen endorsed Craig Wright as Satoshi Nakamoto. Wladimir wrote back then on his blog on May 6, 2016:

When we saw the blog post convinced he found Satoshi, the prudent thing to do was to revoke his ownership of the ‘bitcoin’ organization on github, under which the Bitcoin Core repository currently lies, immediately.

In the past he has stated that “Satoshi can have write access to the github repo any time he asks.”, so if he is absolutely convinced that this is Satoshi, there is a risk that he’d give away the repository to a scammer.

All in all, it’s very understandable why he moved away from Bitcoin starting 2021, and that’s why it’s more than good to see that Wladimir van der Laan, the longest standing Bitcoin Lead Maintainer so far, with a wealth of experience, is considering coming back to Bitcoin development.

The rest of the pack
Now some more immediate responses to the Justice Mellor decision news.

Source: TwitterSalty KurtSource: TwitterSource: TwitterSource: Twitter

And I couldn’t help getting goosebumps when I became aware of Steve Shadders’ (former CTO of nChain) story on Reddit.

Who had thought that my body of work could have ever such influence? I mean, we knew that Steve Shadders was no that shy anymore lately to express his opinions about Craig Wright.

But who knew that Steve his wife had recently passed away, and that his wife had played a very important role in Steve waking up to the idea that Craig might not be the person who he claims to be?

Get a tissue ready, this is Steve Shadders up close and personal.

Please don’t avoid talking about it my account, yes I did make the disclosure about her passing on a BSV spaces just after Mellor made his ruling from the bench. The reason I did was because I was aware the story was already going around and I didn’t want some twisted Chinese whispers version of it taking hold, So it was better to just get the real version on the record.

She had a very large brain aneurism (10mm) and we think some clots broke off and caused a small stroke. She lost some mobility in her right hand side and some speech impairment. A stent was put in and she was recovering well, I pretty much lived in her hospital room and hour or so before it happened we were laughing and joking about how much fun it was going to be spending more time together in the pool doing ‘walking practice’. Then while I was there, something went wrong with the stent and the aneurism ruptured, they had her in theatre within 30 mins. But the damage was massive and there wasn’t anything they could do. I was at least with her at the very end though.

I accept the hitman comment was a little dark. And for the record, I genuinely don’t believe Calvin is the hitman type. But I was trying to express was that any hesitance I previously had about speaking out was all about protecting her from consequences, not me. And I don’t need to anymore. The blockchain world can be a brutal social setting and I’m pretty much immune to it. You can call me the most evil bastard in the world and I’ll shrug it off. But my Achilles heel was her, I couldn’t deal with the idea of anyone going after her and so I kept her very much in the background. She was an utterly fearless woman though, it was more about my protective instinct than any fear she had.

Raylene (Wilson) had double degree in Psychology and Criminology (not enough to need a wheelbarrow). And she worked for many years in the mental health and homelessness sector. She worked with our Prime Minister at the time to terminate the practise of fining the homeless. But the other part of her job was what I called the ‘too hard basket’. When the worst criminals imaginable were released from Jail, someone has the deal with the reality that they need to reintegrate into society and for the worst one’s they called her in. One in particular known as ‘the vampire killer’, who decapitated her own partner and drained her body of blood. With her background she had the most penetrating insight into people I’ve ever seen, to the point that often people with something to hide were instinctively scared of her without knowing why. Something that qualified her eminently to deal with the Blockchain world which has a disproportionate number of people with various mental derangements and personality disorders.

The main reason I’m giving you this background, is because in recent days I’ve received a few messages from people I never would have expected to hear from (on ‘the other side’), expressing some gratitude for my speaking out. If anything I have done has contributed in any small way to what has happened in court, I want to say the credit really should go to her, not me. She was with me almost every time I was with Craig at his house, often drinking late into the night (although she rarely drank so her memory was always very clear). And it was her that started seeing through him long before I did, and she very gently guided my thoughts along paths that led me to understand what had really been going on. She started taking a serious look at AVP [Arthur Van Pelt]’s work well before I did and convinced me that it wasn’t all the biased rhetoric I assumed it would be, so I gave it a go and discovered what well structured research it actually was.

Steve Shadders sharing his latest insights with the BSV fan club

There’s much more including her work with BA (pretty much the only credible things BA ever did was was either Jimmy or under the leadership of her with the team she built. She was told by the MD that her final performance report was the best of the entire organization by a wide margin, 6 weeks before she was unceremoniously fired without cause, which I can only assume was for the crime of being my wife), but in summary, she was invisible but was actually one of the most influential people in the entire BSV/Craig saga and her sole guiding principle in life was ‘Justice’.

She was an incredible woman and the light of my life. I just wanted you all know what she did for the ‘cause’. When I heard Justice Mellor’s final comments I know wherever she is, she would have been jumping for joy.

Steve Shadders was not alone. Another BSV influencer, Joshua Henslee, admitted (5 minutes in) in his latest YouTube broadcast “COPE — Craig Wright is Not Satoshi Nakamoto” that “I actually read all of Arthur van Pelt’s articles which are very helpful understanding this whole situation”.

https://medium.com/media/57b7612ffc3c8922ebae76f47e50d364/hrefJoshua Henslee his message is not widely supported yet, though.

Joshua Henslee did a follow up video on March 18, 2024 to address the responses he received to his first video. And again there’s a mention of me and my work:

Another thing I want to point out, uh, people really don’t like that I read Arthur van Pelt’s articles, uhm, you, again you can’t fathom. I’m a BSV bagholder but I read Arthur van Pelt’s stuff.

I would bet 95% of people have not read his articles, uhm, in BSV, which is sad because how can you be objective about the information without taking it all in and the reason I said to read this stuff is not because it’s 100% true but because he links to all the relevant stuff so you can see, you should cross reference that with everything he references which are government documents, court documents from the, from Australia, uhm, the Satoshi Affair which is also critical reading, the BBC fallout, the videos, the articles from Wired, Gizmodo, all this stuff it’s, it has the timelines and all that, that’s why I said it.

But you guys don’t even think, so you won’t even open your minds and allow yourselves to critically think and take in objective info. Sure, he might be subjective, but you know what, uhm, again, I’ve come around on this social engineering thing because we can just look at True Crime which is a way bigger thing, right, way more popular with people than crypto probably most people, a lot of people consume these True Crime podcasts. People get obsessed with this stuff, I know, because I’ve gone down some of these rabbit holes in my free time with True Crime, I mean, it seriously is fascinating stuff so that’s how we can explain someone like an Arthur van Pelt going into it because it is so fascinating that the con went on for this long and, you know, the individuals involved, the fact that it deals with a revolutionary invention which is Bitcoin, we can use that to explain it.

We don’t need to come up with conspiracy theories. There may be social engineers there or not, uhm, but that has nothing to do with the information presented. We, you, have to be able to separate the individual presenting the information and the actual information.

And a bit later I get a mention again, within a quote that gives a beautiful insight in how my information has been treated in the BSV camp — or better: BSV cult — all these years:

You have all this info out there that’s been some of it’s been out there for years and it’s up to us if we want to consume it as I mentioned in the video, there was a bubble and info wasn’t allowed in and a lot of that was due to, uh, the self-imposed prison in our minds that we wouldn’t let info in, for example an article by Arthur van Pelt, and you wouldn’t let info out you weren’t allowed to speak out because you would be clowned like I’ve been clowned for the last whatever 48 hours which, you know, that’s fine, I mean it is what it is, uh, it looks like it’s going to be the most watched video on this channel.

shua on Twitter: "More COPE & the Truthhttps://t.co/f566YpKZEn / Twitter"

More COPE & the Truthhttps://t.co/f566YpKZEn

The realistic approach to an analysis.

Then there are the (delusional) people in the BSV fan club that do not believe that a judgment has dropped.

Source: Twitter

The opposite side of the Deadbeat spectrum is Gavin.

Source: Twitter

Then there’s Procaius with a consideration.

Source: Twitter

Admittedly, this response by BSV fan and Craig Wright apologist “tunedcentral” made me laugh out loud.

Aaron Day meanwhile was one of many BSV fans who dumped their BSV holdings. Within three days the price of BSV went from the 0.0016 BTC handle to the 0.0011 BTC handle (-/- 30%).

And lastly, there’s long time Craig Wright fan Ryan X Charles. His tone has changed dramatically too.

Source: Twitter

And on March 18, 2024 (4 days after Justice Mellor’s surprise oral ruling dropped in court), Ryan wrote a long confession, followed by another one, on Twitter, that I will copy here in full just in case the material does not survive over time.

How I was scammed by Craig Wright

Craig Wright never provided convincing evidence that he was Satoshi Nakamoto.

He was the strongest proponent of big blocks and the original protocol, which matched my understanding of the writings of Satoshi Nakamoto. But when push came to shove in court, he was unable to provide any convincing documents or signatures. The most likely explanation is that he is a giant scammer like Bernie Madoff.

Craig Wright is not Satoshi Nakamoto.

There are many reasons why I believed his scam. One of those reasons was that it seemed implausible that someone would go all-in on a scam so big. Why would someone want to hurt everyone around them and even ultimately themselves?

When I first got involved in Bitcoin in 2011, I was very naive. I am far less naive now. Psychopathic scammers do in fact exist and they will hurt everyone around them and themselves. The best explanation is that is that he did, in fact, hurt everyone around him and himself.

Craig Wright is a giant scammer.

I am coming to terms with the fact that Craig Wright has hurt many, many people, and I was one of his enablers by announcing on YouTube and Twitter that I believed he was Satoshi Nakamoto. I was wrong. Many people in crypto have been hurt by his ludicrous indefensible court cases and countless personal attacks. I don’t know if there is anything I can do to rectify this, but I am all ears.

Please stop believing this scam. Losing in court is a big deal. There is no defense. The best explanation is Craig Wright is a giant scammer.

How I became a cult member and how I got out

I became a cult member in 2017 when I met Craig Wight [sic] in person and truly believed he was Satoshi Nakamoto.

I was convinced he was Satoshi because Gavin Andresen, Jon Matonis and Ian Grigg, people I respected, had claimed to verify he was Satoshi Nakamoto, including supposed key signing ceremonies. That, and he had the beliefs and actions of someone I thought was consistent with Satoshi Nakamoto.

My false belief in Craig Wright would go on to damage me financially in truly spectacular fashion. Because Craig told me to use Bitcoin Cash immediately after it launched, believing this was coming from Satoshi Nakamoto, a figure I idolized, I invested my personal savings into Bitcoin Cash and pivoted my business to focus exclusively on Bitcoin Cash. This would turn out to be a disaster in time, as Bitcoin Cash became BSV, and continuously fell in price and adoption.

I used to be a big holder of Bitcoin. I sold all of it to support Craig Wright. Not only did my investments not pan out, but I have missed the giant bull run on Bitcoin as a consequence, even though I am an OG going back to 2011. I am out at least tens of millions of dollars, possibly more. The true scale of the losses will be determined when I account for all of my records.

I realized I had failed in 2020. My business was not profitable, it was not growing, and I realized the technology I had been using exclusively, BSV, had very low prospects of success. I simply had to admit to myself my only option was to exit. I managed to sell the company and then began the long process of unwinding my belief system.

From 2020 until now, I have spent a lot of time ruminating on the trauma I experienced from 2017–2020. Now that we know Craig Wright is not Satoshi Nakamoto, I understand. I was a cult member and was being manipulated by a psychopath who did not care if he ruined me so long as he had perceived near-term benefit.

One of the reasons why it took me so long to accept that Craig Wright is not Satoshi Nakamoto is that it would have to be a truly huge scam that would ultimately hurt everyone and even himself. Unfortunately, as I have learned, this is a known pattern of behavior for psychopaths. Craig Wright will indeed get his day in court, again, as the number of people he has hurt is enormous, and it is now established in court he has been lying this whole time. Lawsuits are inevitable.

It took four years of meditation and relaxation to grapple with the scope of my error. Even after all that time, I am still in shock with the declarations that came from the judge. The totality of evidence is overwhelming. Craig Wright is simply not Satoshi Nakamoto, and there was never a reason to believe that he was. I was totally wrong in a big way. Evidently, I am not as smart as I thought.

I estimate I am only about 50% of the way detoxed from the cult, even after four years, as I am still learning to accept that there was never any convincing evidence he was Satoshi Nakamoto, and everything I thought I knew was all lies. Fortunately, there is an emerging network of survivors who are in touch and can lend each other support to grapple with the emotions involved in exiting a cult.

Craig Wright was enabled by Calvin Ayre and Stefan Matthews, his co-conspirators going back to 2016 or earlier. While I cannot say for sure what happened from before 2017, I do know that the three of them orchestrated this giant scam. I know this from personal experience, and I am certain evidence exists to link them. Together, they have caused a catastrophe for anyone who got involved with them from the beginning until now.

Please be kind to the remaining cult members. They truly believe Craig Wright is Satoshi Nakamoto, and this blinds them to the evidence that is staring them in the face. They need kindness, not trolling on X.

Source: Twitter

Some people willingly choose to keep the cosplay scam of Craig Wright alive, however. For as long as it lasts, that is, of course. Because now that Calvin Ayre has left the sinking ship, we can patiently wait for the moment that he pulls the funding of everything Craig Wright and BSV, which will very likely happen in the upcoming months.

In other words, don’t be surprised when nChain, TAAL, BSV Association, CoinGeek, Lightning Sharks, all the organizations that matter in the BSV realm, and therefore the BSV blockchain with its BSV token, do not exist anymore by the end of 2024.

For the moment though, some BSV fans and Craig Wright apologists will not learn. Let’s take Mr ZeMing Gao for example, who was an expert witness for Craig Wright during the Joint Trial. On March 20, 2024 he wrote on Twitter:

Despite a potential ambiguity in Judge Mellor’s statement, my present understanding is that the judge has declared that Dr. Wright is not Satoshi. And I respect the judge’s decision unless an appellate court overrules it. Respecting a court process and decision means that one must reevaluate the evidence in light of the court process and decision by giving weight that is due to the court and judge.

However, it does not mean that you must change your honest understanding of the facts and the truth and involuntarily change your mind to agree with the judge or the court’s reasoning and conclusion. I reevaluated the evidence in light of the trial with calm and respect.

At this point, my conclusion is still that Dr. Wright is Satoshi, the inventor of the Bitcoin blockchain.

My conclusion is the result of my objectively applying the Bayesian method to estimate the probability of a hypothesis based on all available evidence.

And here’s our friend Ryuushi to close this section.

Is Craig Wright On The Run?

Twitter users ‘bitnorbert’, ‘wizsecurity’ and ‘officialgregmax’ are onto something meanwhile. It appears that Craig Wright is quickly trying to hide his financial assets now that he has lost the COPA v Wright case.

Let’s have a look at what they figured out.

bitnorbert

Faketoshi created RCJBR HOLDING PLC on October 3, after his firing from nChain. He issued 20 million shares, assigning each share a nominal value of £1. Of these, 10 million shares were his.

On the dawn of the COPA trial on February 5, he transferred all his shares to DEMORGAN PTE. LTD., formerly DENARIUZ PTE. LTD., a Singaporean company founded in 2013.

Trying to become judgment proof by going full pauper mode?

Source: Filing history RCJBR HOLDING PLC

wizsecurity (takes over)

Sooo…

Sep 25: Calvin makes a “deal with Craig” allowing him to fund himself. Oct 2–20: Craig registers a new company with £20M worth of shares split between himself and Ramona. Mar 18 (but dated Feb 5): Craig reassigns his £10M shares to their Singapore company.

Now, I’m not taking anything Craig Wright claims at face value, especially when it comes to assets. But *if* he got £20M from Calvin and put it in a holdings company, this is what incompetently trying to protect those assets from upcoming costs orders would look like.

Wright bragged on Slack about how he makes himself “judgment proof” by not having assets under his own name, and he repeatedly made that same argument in the Kleiman case, so the foreshadowing hasn’t exactly been subtle.

Filing to reassign assets overseas immediately after he lost the trial and backdating the transfers to the start date of the trial. Chef’s kiss.

Who knows whether the assets are actually real or not, but just the *optics* of this pretty much dug his hole a hundred feet deeper.

(The registrations do claim the 20M shares are valued at £1 each and fully paid for with cash, but it’s not like Wright hasn’t falsely reported company assets before — it’s kind of his thing.)

officialgregmax (mingles in)

He doesnt need to fund the £20m equity with cash. It can still appear as an “amount receivable from shareholders”. What this does is he can pledge shares of a company with a net equity of £20m as pledge/collateral or security for costs in a court etc. I highly doubt he has £20 to rub together, let alone £20m.

wizsecurity

Yeah, that was my first thought as well. But the forms have pretty unambiguous ways to declare unpaid shares, and Wright explicitly registered them as fully paid (£1 per share) and even entered an extra note saying cash only (no other forms of consideration). 🤷‍♂️”

So far for the inquiry into Craig Wright possibly running and hiding his financial assets. I’ll update this section when more details become known, so don’t forget to check back every now and then!

EDIT March 28, 2024 Justice Mellor issues a “Worldwide Freezing Order” related to these findings.

Paragraph 22 of the order explains further:

The position on the merits of the Identity Issue (which was the only issue in the Joint Trial) is that COPA and the Developers have succeeded, albeit I have yet to explain my full reasons. I have already indicated that the evidence was overwhelming. As COPA submit, that necessarily means (as I shall explain in my Trial judgment) that Dr Wright has forged documents on a grand scale and, during his cross-examination, he lied extensively and repeatedly.

The Freezing Order is for no less than £6,000,000.

Final Ruling Of Justice Mellor

Space reserved for the highlights of the written ruling of Justice Mellor when it comes out.

That’s all folks, thanks for reading!

Artie Fan Belt 🔥 ∞/21M ⚡ on Twitter: "Craig Wright, The Cosplay 2014 - 2024(aka the end of an era) ❌signed message❌moved coins❌can code❌stylometry match❌won Kleiman❌won McCormack❌won hodlonaut❌won COPA✔created 1,000+ forgeries✔caught lying✔ninja costume✔Lego box❌is Satoshi Nakamoto / Twitter"

Craig Wright, The Cosplay 2014 - 2024(aka the end of an era) ❌signed message❌moved coins❌can code❌stylometry match❌won Kleiman❌won McCormack❌won hodlonaut❌won COPA✔created 1,000+ forgeries✔caught lying✔ninja costume✔Lego box❌is Satoshi Nakamoto

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