The second week of the Kleiman v Wright only has three trial days due to the long weekend starting on November 11, Veterans Day. And Day 8 of the trial has been cut short because a juror was feeling feverish, and Judge Beth Bloom has decided to adjourn early for safety reasons.
The late Dave Kleiman’s brother Ira Kleiman, the plaintiff, is representing the Dave Kleiman estate and W&K Info Defense Research, LLC in this civil lawsuit filed against computer expert Craig Wright, who wrote the Bitcoin white paper under the Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym.
The plaintiff is claiming that Dave Kleiman and Wright partnered to write the Bitcoin white paper as Satoshi Nakamoto and were business partners in mining 1.1 million Bitcoin currently valued at over $74 billion through W&K Info Defense Research, LLC. Ira Kleiman is demanding up to half of the 1.1 million Bitcoin or at least about $11.5 billion.
It is important to note that Wright being Satoshi Nakamoto is something taken by the lawsuit as true. The point of contention is that Wright was not alone as Satoshi Nakamoto, and that Dave Kleiman, who died in April 2013, was his partner.
Because the court was in session for only two hours and 40 minutes, Craig Wright has not finished his testimony and is still under oath. As legal counsel to the plaintiff Vel Freedman introduces pieces of evidence from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), the purpose of which seems to be for the jury to believe that Wright is not a credible witness, Wright continues to have an explanation to whatever is thrown at him.
On the ATO Documents Presented by the Plaintiff
According to Wright, ATO documents that Freedman keeps bringing up that shows Wright has provided fraudulent statements and documents should have been inadmissible in court because they were proven to be false, and in fact, the ATO auditor involved was fired for it.
Furthermore, Wright called the ATO investigation a “witch hunt,” wherein he had to go “through over 200 audits in a five-year period” until his family permanently moved out of Australia. And for the record, he won all the cases against the ATO, which should have rendered all of the ATO documents presented by the plaintiff useless.
The ATO “witch hunt” was also the reason that Wright had to transfer some of his assets to David Kleiman. It is a way to protect his assets from the ATO. And this is why there are now records of Dave Kleiman transferring assets to Wright, which the plaintiff is alleging Wright stole from Dave Kleiman. Wright further explained that having control of assets does not automatically denote ownership.
“Dave helped me act as a front, a sham as the ATO called it. So, it looked like he ran all my companies… the Australian Taxation office almost bankrupt me and became the owner of Bitcoin’s IP,” Wright explained.
Wright is describing an agreement between friends, one that according to Wright that Dave Kleiman did willingly. And this is supported by Dave Kleiman not claiming any of Wright’s assets, including Bitcoin, when he was alive. It seems that Dave Kleiman was really the stand-up guy he has been testified to being. He did not try to take advantage of his friend’s wealth.
Wright added that these falsified and unauthorized ATO documents, as well as emails that were allegedly sent by him, will be discussed at length when it is the defense’s turn to present evidence and witnesses. The defense is expected to call in computer forensic experts to the stand to testify to these hacked emails and falsified ATO documents the plaintiff is counting on to act as compelling evidence in the case.
It is also interesting to note that while the plaintiff has presented a variety of ATO documents to tarnish Wright’s credibility to the jury, there seems to be no one from the ATO taking the stand to verify the authenticity of these documents.
On Dave Kleiman’s Role in Bitcoin
Wright made it clear that although Dave Kleiman helped him a lot and had provided moral support when he was about to quit creating Bitcoin, David Kleiman is not part of the Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym who wrote the Bitcoin white paper.
“I believe that Dave was essential for me because, without Dave, I would not have survived. I talked to Dave three, four times a week. So, Dave was essential because I would not have kept my sanity without Dave. Dave was my best friend and without Dave there to talk to literally I would have just quit earlier,” Wright said.
Wright also admitted to exaggerating Dave Kleiman’s role in Bitcoin because he wanted his dead friend to be remembered. While Dave Kleiman has done a lot of noteworthy things, it was not as incredible as being involved in Bitcoin.
To Ira Kleiman, Wright said that he also amplified Dave Kleiman’s involvement in Bitcoin because he thought he was speaking to a family member who was interested in knowing what his brother was doing before he died. Wright did not think that Ira Kleiman at that time was already gathering evidence for a lawsuit against him as the timeline proves.
All in all, the second week of trial ended with Wright having a thorough explanation to whatever evidence the plaintiff presented, even addressing the jury several times to explain himself and so they could better understand what Bitcoin is and what role Dave Kleiman had in its success. It can even be said that Wright has been doing well in fending off the plaintiff’s allegations.
The historic Bitcoin trial will resume on Monday, wherein the final trial schedule will be known, which hinges on whether or not the feverish juror tests positive for COVID-19.