United Kingdom High Court freezes Craig Wright’s assets

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The High Court of the United Kingdom issued a World Freezing Order against computer scientist and businessman Craig Wright’s assets, legal documents filed on July 5 revealed.

Wright’s assets were frozen to help podcast host and entrepreneur Peter McCormack, sued by Wright for libel in 2019, recoup roughly 1.5 million British pounds ($1.9 million) in legal fees.

Cointelegraph reached out to McCormack for comment but was unable to obtain a response by the time of publication.

The first page of the World Freezing Order against Craig Wright. Source: United Kingdom National Archives

Craig Wright v Peter McCormack

The legal battle between Wright and McCormack began with comments McCormack made against Wright in several tweets and a YouTube video, accusing the computer scientist and entrepreneur of fraudulently asserting he was Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous inventor of Bitcoin (BTC).

Following McCormack’s statements, Wright filed a lawsuit against the podcaster, claiming that McCormack defamed his character.

Related: Satoshi-era Bitcoin wallet wakes up after 14 years, sends 50 BTC to Binance

Court rules Wright is not Satoshi

Wright began claiming he was the fabled Satoshi Nakamoto in 2016 and used this claim as the basis to file lawsuits against 13 Bitcoin Core developers. The Australian computer scientist argued that the developers violated his copyrights on the Bitcoin white paper and certain features of the decentralized protocol, like Bitcoin’s database.

The Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA), an industry group comprised of several defendants listed in Wright’s lawsuit, provided at least 50 pieces of evidence, accusing Wright of forgery. In their closing arguments, attorneys for COPA stated “He [Wright] has invented an entire biographical history, producing one tranche after another of forged documents to support it.”

After weighing the evidence, the court ruled that Wright was not Nakamoto, ending the intellectual property battle that could have had massive implications for the entire Bitcoin ecosystem.

Judge James Mellor’s landmark ruling conclusively proving that Wright’s claims of being the inventor of Bitcoin were false established the legal foundation absolving McCormack of defaming Wright’s character and the right to legal compensation.

Magazine: Peter McCormack’s Twitter regrets: ‘I can feel myself being a dick’ — Hall of Flame