Bitcoin (BTC) prices could face fresh volatility after Craig Wright was ordered to pay 500,000 BTC to the brother of Dave Kleiman, his late business partner.
The payout — worth more than $5 billion at the time of writing — could attract an estate tax rate of 40%, which Kleiman’s estate would have to pay.
There are now fears that 200,000 coins could be dumped on the market in order to settle $2 billion bill, potentially causing a crash.
In an interview with fintech magazine Modern Consensus, Wright said he would comply with the court order, which follows allegations that he stole hundreds of thousands of BTC from Dave Kleiman.
Based on thin Ayre?
The ruling brings to a head a debacle which has dragged on for years and involved an increasing number of third parties far removed from Wright and his entourage.
In the face of multiple claims of fraud on social media, Wright even began suing those who disagreed with his alleged proof that he created Bitcoin. Those lawsuits came to nothing, while this week, those publicly supporting Wright’s original statements evaporated.
Only Calvin Ayre, a major supporter of Wright’s favored altcoin Bitcoin SV (BSV), continued to argue he was Nakamoto.
“The judge ruled Craig and Dave are Satoshi. This is not accurate but its enough to have Craig accurately be referred to as Satoshi as he is saying and this will likely be appealed,” he wrote on Twitter.
Large numbers of responses then immediately dismissed the comments. United Kingdom-based entrepreneur Alistair Milne described Ayre’s words as flat-out lies.
“The US court *did NOT* rule that Wright/Kleiman were Satoshi Nakamoto. Anyone telling you otherwise is either insane or a liar,” he tweeted.
In what will be a source of personal satisfaction to Wright’s previous legal victims, meanwhile, one person present at the hearing concluded it was now not libellous to label him a fraud.
Citing testimony from Kleiman, Katie Ananina wrote in a digest of the proceedings:
Ananina noted the judge also threw out Wright’s claim he would be able to prove he had access to the private keys bolstering his Nakamoto claim by January 2020.