- Day 2 of the trial
- More documents allowed
- Evasive replies
- Credibility test
- Attacks on the character of experts
- Declaration adjustment rejected
The second day of the high-profile COPA vs. Craig Wright trial brought forth a continuation of the intricate legal battle that is unfolding at the Royal Courts of Justice in London. Craig Steven Wright, who claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin, faced the non-profit Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA) in a case that centers around the authenticity of his claim and the alleged forgery of documents.
The day started with Mr. Justice Mellor outlining the scope of the trial, which included allowing COPA to introduce up to 20 additional allegations of forgery. This expansion reflects the complex nature of the case, as both sides delve into the intricate details of Wright’s claims and the evidence supporting them.
Wright’s defense began with his insistence that he had never forged any documents to support his claim of being Satoshi Nakamoto. This statement was made under oath, highlighting the gravity of the allegations he faces. Wright’s defense was marked by lengthy and sometimes rambling responses, which Justice Mellor described as partly irrelevant. This approach might be indicative of the defense’s strategy to thoroughly address each point raised by COPA, albeit in a manner that the court found to be somewhat circuitous.
Craig Wright has just said that both of the experts in this trial are not qualified to review the forgeries.— What The Finance (@WhatTheFinance9) February 6, 2024
That has to be a below-the-belt blow for the Judge who allowed testimony from both experts.
CW suggests that "people he knows" agree with him that his documents are NOT…
The examination of Wright’s evidence was a key focus. COPA intends to prove allegations against Wright, which include using artificial intelligence for document forgery, submitting anachronistic handwritten notes, and manipulating electronic document metadata. This level of scrutiny of Wright’s evidence is pivotal, as it goes to the heart of his claim to be the creator of Bitcoin.
A notable development in the trial was Wright’s submission of a new document, referred to as “Wright 11,” which encompasses over 330 pages and nearly 1,250 paragraphs. The size and substance of this document sparked discussions about its relevance and adherence to procedural norms. The court’s decision to scrutinize this document closely reflects the meticulous nature of the judicial process in evaluating the claims and evidence presented.
One of the main points of contention was Wright’s claim that he had reused his own words from a previous work called BlackNet in the Bitcoin white paper, published in 2008. This claim was part of Wright’s defense against accusations that he had fabricated evidence to support his assertion of being Satoshi Nakamoto. Furthermore, Wright’s difficulty in operating a computer mouse and a mobile phone simultaneously was highlighted during the trial, adding a layer of irony to the proceedings considering his claim of having created Bitcoin.
The trial also delved into the specifics of the credit card used to acquire the bitcoin.org domain name, with Wright frequently invoking legal privilege in his responses. He maintained that signs of editing on the documents were due to printing errors rather than evidence of forgery, a claim that was met with skepticism.
Wright’s defense was marked by a mix of denials and justifications. He attributed inconsistencies in his arguments to self-plagiarizing, printing errors, and the illnesses or deaths of various witnesses, rather than admitting to any forgery. The examination of a 2008 document, described by Wright as proof of his early involvement in Bitcoin, focused on discrepancies in font sizes and alignments. Wright defended the document’s integrity, attributing anomalies to print quality.
The issue of expert evidence also came to the forefront, with the court relying on previous legal principles to navigate the admissibility and scrutiny of such testimony. This aspect is crucial, as expert opinions can significantly influence the court’s understanding and interpretation of technical details pertinent to Wright’s claims.
Moreover, the court expressed concern over Wright’s pattern of late document disclosures, emphasizing the need for adherence to procedural timelines. This stance by the court indicates a low tolerance for delays and underscores the importance of timely submissions in legal proceedings.
Dr. Tufty Sylvestris a UK and European patent attorney that is present at the trial, was seen being interviewed outside the building earlier in the day. He provided an insightful opinion on Craig Wright’s testimony in the COPA trial. Sylvestris highlighted the significance of Wright taking the stand and swearing to tell the truth, contrasting this with his previous behavior in the McCormack trial. This moment potentially transformed charges of contempt of court into perjury.
Throughout his testimony, Wright calmly denied all accusations of manipulation and forgery, offering explanations that Sylvestris found increasingly implausible. Despite the seriousness of the allegations, Wright maintained a demeanor suggesting clarity and confidence in his position, even when the evidence seemed to contradict him. Notably, there were no emotional outbursts, and the judge ensured regular breaks during the proceedings.
A point of contention was Wright’s claim of having filed thousands of patents, which Sylvestris noted as irrelevant to the allegations at hand. Wright’s comments on the joint report from the experts on both sides indicated a dismissal of their expertise, based on his belief in his superior knowledge.
Sylvestris also observed Wright’s repeated defense strategy of claiming that any forgeries he would commit would be perfect, contrasting this with the actual evidence suggesting otherwise. This approach was consistent across multiple documents, with Wright steadfastly denying allegations even when faced with compelling evidence.
Additionally, Sylvestris noted some of Wright’s notable quotes, including his self-description as an “evil little prick” from the Kleiman case and his comments blaming lawyers and staff for harming rather than helping him. These statements reflect Wright’s contentious stance and the complexity of the case.
Firstly, I think all present recognised it was a very significant moment when CSW took the stand, was sworn in with the usual "tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth", following this with a clear "yes" to testify to the truth of all his witness statements. This…— Dr Tufty Sylvestris (@tuftythecat) February 6, 2024
Norbert, live-tweeting a transcript of the COPA v Wright trial, shared his reflections on Day 2, emphasizing the dramatic and unpredictable nature of the proceedings. According to Norbert, the day was filled with absurdities characteristic of a “Faketoshi trial,” with Wright’s new evidence being allowed just before closing the previous day. Judge Mellor appeared less sympathetic towards this new evidence, highlighting the fortunate position Wright found himself in despite the serious allegations made against him.
Norbert observed the effective cross-examination by COPA’s counsel, who skillfully navigated through Wright’s explanations and excuses. Particularly noteworthy was an instance where Wright’s own expert was discredited as both incompetent and lacking independence. Wright also seemed to imply that he did not fully endorse the documents he was relying on, and even appeared to admit to habitual plagiarism.
The day was described as disastrous for Wright, with Norbert expressing curiosity about Judge Mellor’s thoughts and notes during the trial. The atmosphere in the courtroom was portrayed as charged, with the presence of several bitcoin enthusiasts, indicating the trial’s significance to the wider cryptocurrency community. Norbert’s invitation to others to attend and witness the “greatest show on earth” highlights the trial’s dramatic and public appeal.
Reflections on Day 2 of COPA v Wright, the identity issue.— Norbert ⚡️ (@bitnorbert) February 6, 2024
We're off to the races now! Today was predictably more interesting than yesterday, and brought a lot of the absurdity we expect from a Faketoshi trial.
After having allowed Wright's new evidence just before closing…
Arthur van Pelt, a noted expert on the “Faketoshi” saga, provided a summary of Day 2 of the trial involving Craig Wright. Van Pelt noted that Wright, consistent with his approach in the Kleiman and Hodlonaut Norway cases, denied all accusations of forgery. However, he observed that Wright’s denials lacked plausible explanations and were not supported by any counter-evidence.
Van Pelt pointed out that while Wright’s supporters, often referred to as the BSV/CSW cult, might be convinced by his testimony, forensic experts involved in the case hold a different view. According to van Pelt, these experts have produced no less than three joint statements, essentially asserting that the majority of the disputed documents in question were deliberately created. Wright, he noted, failed to effectively address these expert statements during the day’s proceedings.
Van Pelt highlighted a discrepancy between the perception of Wright’s supporters, who may believe Wright is prevailing in the trial, and the actual situation in the courtroom. He suggested that more lies and discrepancies were added to an already extensive list of issues surrounding Wright’s claims.
A particularly striking detail shared by van Pelt is the extensive nature of the Madden reports, which he mentioned have now exceeded 1,500 pages. This detail underscores the depth and complexity of the analysis being undertaken in this high-profile case. Van Pelt also highlights that technical and forensic evidence plays a crucial role in unraveling the truth behind Wright’s claims of being Satoshi Nakamoto.
Summary Day 2 (didn't follow everything).— Artie Fan Belt 🔥 ∞/21M ⚡ (@Arthur_van_Pelt) February 6, 2024
Craig was, as expected & just like during Kleiman & hodlonaut Norway cases, denying all forgery accusations with, as always, hardly any plausible explanations and absolutely no counter evidence.
Ex nChain CEO Christen Ager-Hanssen expressed strong feelings about the latest developments in the courtroom involving Craig Wright. Ager-Hanssen described the proceedings as “absurd” and was at a loss for words over Wright’s demeanor and responses. He conveyed a sense of disbelief and shock, indicating that Wright’s arrogance and seemingly foolish replies were difficult to comprehend.
Ager-Hanssen’s opinion reflects a critical view of Wright’s efforts to establish himself as Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin. He implied that Wright’s claims lacked substance and were not convincing to those present in the courtroom. This skepticism towards Wright’s assertions adds to the ongoing controversy surrounding his identity claims.
Furthermore, Ager-Hanssen expressed a sentiment of justice being served, suggesting that Wright deserves the disgrace he’s facing in the trial. This viewpoint stems from Ager-Hanssen’s perception that Wright has caused considerable grief to many people over the years. The trial, in his view, appears to be a culmination of Wright’s actions and the controversy he has stirred in the cryptocurrency community.
As the trial progresses, the crypto community and observers worldwide are closely watching, given the potential implications of the case’s outcome on the identity of Bitcoin’s creator and the broader implications for the cryptocurrency world.
- Lucy Walker is a journalist that covers finance, health and beauty since 2014. She has been writing for various online publications.
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