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Craig Wright private key delivered, claims to prove Bitcoin holdings

Elliot Hill

Craig Wright’s lawyers have informed the United States District Court of the Southern District of Florida that a third party has provided the necessary private key to unlock the encrypted file that contains a list of his Bitcoin holdings.

The file has been presented to the court via a notice of compliance from Wright’s lawyers.

The proof of Wright’s holdings has also been delivered to the plaintiff, Ira Kleiman, who is representing the Kleiman estate.

Kleiman vs Wright

Dr Wright, an Australian cybersecurity researcher living in London, is the defendant in a lengthy legal dispute with representatives of the late Dave Kleiman. The pair are thought to have jointly played a significant role in the early creation of the Bitcoin protocol.

Acting on behalf of Kleiman’s estate, the plaintiffs allege that a significant sum of BTC was misappropriated by Wright after Kleiman’s death.

Wright claimed that he could only access the disputed funds once the ‘Tulip Trust’ that protected them had expired – which happened at the beginning of 2020.

However, he has so far only produced the encryption key which unlocks a list of total Bitcoin holdings and has not provided the private keys necessary to access the funds themselves.

As a result, the pressure is still on Wright to deliver the final private keys, which he claims will arrive by “bonded courier” before February 3.

February 3 deadline

Wright has until February 3 to prove he has access to the Bitcoin wallets.

Court filings from January 10 show that Wright was given an extension to an earlier ruling which would have seen him forfeit 500,000 Bitcoin, worth around $4 billion, to the Kleiman estate.

Wright claims that if he can prove he has the private keys, then his pivotal role in creating the original Bitcoin protocol will be proven beyond reasonable doubt.

Kleiman worked alongside Wright in the early days of the Bitcoin protocol’s creation, and many industry experts believe that Kleiman was in fact the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto.

However, Kleiman’s death in 2013 saw Wright claim to be the creator of the protocol.

Kleiman’s surviving family claim that Wright misappropriated funds from his late business partner, and now seek restitution of the full 1.1 million BTC.

You can read more about the Kleiman vs Wright case here.

 

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