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Craig Wright wins ‘only nominal damages’ of £1 in bitcoin libel case

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theguardian.com

For years Craig Wright has claimed that he is the mythical figure who created bitcoin. But a legal bid by the Australian computer scientist to defend his assertion that he is Satoshi Nakamoto resulted in a pyrrhic victory and a tarnished reputation on Monday.A high court judge ruled Wright had given “deliberately false evidence” in a libel case and awarded him £1 in damages after he sued a blogger for alleging that his claim to be the elusive Nakamoto was fraudulent.“Because he [Wright] advanced a deliberately false case and put forward deliberately false evidence until days before trial, he will recover only nominal damages,” wrote Justice Chamberlain.Wright had sued blogger Peter McCormack over a series of tweets in 2019, and a video discussion broadcast on YouTube, in which McCormack said Wright was a “fraud” and is not Satoshi.

The issue of Nakamoto’s identity was not covered by the judge’s ruling because McCormack had earlier abandoned a defence of truth in his case.Wright claimed that his reputation within the cryptocurrency industry had been “seriously harmed” by McCormack’s claims.

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