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UK Judge Rejects Computer Scientist’s Claim to Be Bitcoin Inventor

A judge at London’s High Court ruled Monday (May 20) that Australian computer scientist Craig Wright lied and forged documents to support his false claim of being the inventor of bitcoin.

Judge James Mellor ruled in March that the evidence Wright was not the pseudonymous “Satoshi Nakamoto” and gave his reasons for this conclusion Monday, Reuters reported Monday.

The judge said that Wright had lied and forged documents to support his claim to be the inventor and that his lawsuits against developers and his views about bitcoin also went against his claims, according to the report.

The case in which this decision was rendered was brought by the Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA) and was aimed at stopping Wright from suing bitcoin developers, the report said.

In a Monday blog post that following the rule, COPA wrote that the judgment “forensically demolishes Wright’s fraudulent claims.”

“This decision is a watershed moment for the open-source community and even more importantly, a definitive win for the truth,” a COPA spokesperson said in the post. “Developers can now continue their important work maintaining, iterating on and improving the bitcoin network without risking their personal livelihoods or fearing costly and time-consuming litigation from Craig Wright.”

In a Monday post on X, Wright said: “I fully intend to appeal the decision of the court on the matter of the identity issue. I would like to acknowledge and thank all my supporters for their unwavering encouragement and support.”

Wright stepped forward with his claim to be the creator of bitcoin in May 2016, making the claim to three publications — the BBC, The Economist and GQ — and sending messages digitally signed with cryptographic keys created during the early days of bitcoin’s development.

“These are the blocks used to send 10 bitcoins to Hal Finney in January [2009] as the first bitcoin transaction,” Wright said at the time during his demonstration.

By December 2019, when a judge in Florida ruled that Wright’s late partner owned half of all the coins that Wright mined through the year 2013 and half of the intellectual property that was created, some crypto experts thought he was a fraud.