$7.4 Million of Craig Wright’s Assets Frozen Following Bitcoin Creator Trial

$7.4 Million of Craig Wright’s Assets Frozen Following Bitcoin Creator Trial

Concerned that computer scientist Craig Wright might attempt to evade the financial judgment levied against him after a UK court determined that he is not the creator of Bitcoin, the judge issued an order Thursday freezing a significant chunk of his assets.

In a court document shared by the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund, the “worldwide freezing order” imposed by judge James Mellor is intended to secure 6 million GBP—or about $7.4 million—of Wright’s assets.

The legal hold is the latest step in the latest legal dispute between COPA, a group of Bitcoin developers backed by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, and Craig Wright that began in February. Earlier this month, Mellor ruled that Wright was not the person behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto nor the author of the Bitcoin whitepaper.

According to court documents, the freeze is intended to cover COPA’s legal fees and protect against Wright “dissipating” his assets. In January, before the trial began, Wright had offered to settle out of court with COPA to avoid mounting legal fees, but COPA rejected the proposal.

The move, Mellor noted, was expedited after Wright transferred ownership of his shares in his company, RCJBR Holding, to Singapore-based DeMorgan PTE on March 18.

“Understandably, that gave rise to serious concerns on COPA’s part that Dr Wright was implementing measures to seek to evade the costs consequences of his loss at trial,” Mellor said, reaffirming that COPA (and its affiliated Bitcoin developers) were the winning party.

COPA has a “very powerful claim to be awarded a very substantial sum in cost,” the judge wrote, but acknowledged that it would not be right to issue final payment orders for COPA against Wright without Wright having an opportunity to respond.

“In my judgment, this is a plain case for a freezing injunction and one which extends worldwide,” Mellor said.

Mellor reiterated the court’s demand for Wright to provide a clear accounting of all of his assets as soon as possible.

COPA has been in a legal battle with Wright since 2021 and has repeatedly called his claims of being the inventor of Bitcoin false.

“Our case is that Dr. Wright’s claim to be Satoshi Nakamoto is a brazen lie, an elaborate false narrative supported by forgery on an industrial scale,” attorneys representing COPA said in an email to Decrypt.

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