Update March 11: Craig Wright now has until March 12 to produce sufficient documentation detailing the quantity of Bitcoins held by the ‘Tulip Trusts’ and their corresponding Bitcoin addresses.
Judge Bruce Reinhart has slammed Craig Wright for producing forged documents and giving perjured testimony during the ongoing litigations between Wright and Ira Kleiman during a hearing concerning the Tulip Trust.
Reinhart questioned Wright’s credibility, noting that — in the past — the self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto had openly lied to the court:
“Particularly given my prior finding that Dr. Wright has produced forged documents in this litigation, I decline to rely on this kind of document, which could easily have been generated by anyone with word processing software and a pen [...] I give no weight to sworn statements of Dr. Wright that advance his interests but that have not been challenged by cross-examination and for which I cannot make a credibility determination. I have previously found that Dr. Wright gave perjured testimony in my presence.”
On March 9, 2019, Judge Reinhart ordered Wright to produce a list of his Bitcoin holdings — which Wright again claimed he could not do as it was held by a blind trust that he could not access. Wright estimated that it would take until January 2020 for the list to be delivered by bonded courier.
Judge Bloom allowed Wright until Feb. 3, 2020 to file a notice with the court “indicating whether or not this mysterious figure has appeared from the shadows and whether the Defendant now has access to the last key slice needed to unlock the encrypted file.”
On January 6, 2020, Wright produced documents evidencing a previously unidentified trust — ‘Tulip Trust III’. Both Judge Bloom and the plaintiffs requested several depositions seeking to establish how Wright obtained the Tulip Trust III documentation, to which Wright objected to numerous interrogatories based attorney-client privilege and spousal privilege.
Wright rejects discovery asserting attorney-client and spousal privileges
Wright claimed that his wife is the trustee of the Tulip Trust, and received the trust agreement as an encrypted file during December 2019 from the trust’s counsel.
As such, Wright asserted that the communications between his wife, Ramona Watts, and the trust’s counsel, Denis Mayaka, are protected by attorney-client privilege, adding that communications between he and his wife are protected by spousal privilege.
The judge determined that “the record does not establish that an attorney-client relationship exists between Mr. Mayaka and Ms. Watts,” also disregarding Wright’s “Mayaka Declaration” as it had not been adequately authenticated. Further, the judge found that the Trust document failed to identify Mayaka as counsel, noting that that “he is assigned a different role.”
As such, the judge concluded that “the record does not establish that Mr. Mayaka is counsel to the Trustee of the Tulip Trust,” adding that Wright and Mayaka do not have an independent attorney-client relationship.
Judge requests judicial assistance from U.K. court
On the same day, the judge requested judicial assistance from the Senior Master of the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court in the United Kingdom in the litigation between Kleiman and Wright.
The ongoing case concerns the effort of Ira Kleiman, the deceased brother of David Kleiman, to claim his brother’s share of the Tulip Trust — a stash of more than one million Bitcoins (BTC) that was purportedly set up by Wright and Kleiman following their supposed creation of Bitcoin.