Ira Kleiman, recently awarded $100 million in his anti-climatic Bitcoin lawsuit against Craig Wright, wants the maverick Australian back in court for a retrial.
He’s requested a new trial alleging that Wright did not follow a court order to exclude information about Ira and Dave Kleiman’s relationship as brothers during his arguments before a Miami jury.
Ira filed his original lawsuit in February 2018, alleging that Wright schemed to defraud Dave of 1.1 million BTC ($48.2 billion) plus intellectual property related to Bitcoin’s software.
The case was effectively an attempted ‘gotchya’ on Wright; Wright professes to be Bitcoin’s creator but he’s never signed a transaction with Nakamoto’s private keys in public.
Kleiman’s logic more-or-less goes that if Wright is Nakamoto, he must have access to billions of dollars worth of Bitcoin believed mined by its creator.
And seeing as though Ira’s brother Dave allegedly helped Nakamoto create Bitcoin, it’s only right that the Kleiman estate see some of that cryptocurrency.
Judge ruled in Wright’s favor, but he still lost
A Miami judge ruled in Wright’s favor last month on six of the seven counts brought by the Kleiman estate. This means Wright doesn’t have to split Bitcoin he (sorta) claims is his via the Nakamoto moniker.
(Note: if Wright was ordered to split value generated by Nakamoto’s Bitcoin, the court would’ve demanded settlement in US dollars.)
Ira argued that Wright violated an oral agreement by cutting Dave off from the supposed Bitcoin stash. Wright denied the allegations and claimed that no partnership with Dave existed.
Most importantly, however, jurors voted in favor of Kleiman on a count of conversion for intellectual property moved from co-owned W&K Info Defense Research LLC to entities that Wright exclusively owned.
That verdict awarded $100 million to the Kleiman estate, forcing Wright to pay the sum into the company that Dave and Wright allegedly operated as partners, W&K Info Defense Research LLC.
But in a courtroom trial in Miami last November, Ira and his attorneys reportedly did not discuss Ira’s relationship with his late brother Dave.
This meant jurors weren’t privy to the pair’s history as told via Ira and his lawyers.
Ira’s recent filing requesting a retrial explains that he was simply following the judge’s explicit decision to disallow discussion about Ira and Dave’s relationship.
Juror in Bitcoin case says Wright’s version of events had sway
Law360 interviewed one of the jurors in the November 2021 trial. They admitted the jury found it curious that Ira’s plaintiff counsel did not substantially discuss Ira and Dave’s relationship.
In contrast, Wright’s attorneys did discuss their relationship in the courtroom, as many as 10 times. The juror noted that testimony about this relationship by Wright’s witnesses did influence the jury’s decision.
- Because Wright did not follow the judge’s order to not discuss this topic, Ira believes that he has the right to re-litigate some claims against Wright.
- US Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart previously opined that Wright “produced forged documents” and “gave perjured testimony in my presence.”
- Reinhart also confirmed that Wright “has taken directly conflicting factual positions at different times during this litigation. The record is replete with instances in which [Wright] has proffered conflicting sworn testimony before this Court.”
Rumors have long circulated that Ayre provides funding for Wright’s numerous legal battles against Bitcoin Core developers.
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