UK court to judge who invented bitcoin

London’s High Court has allowed a copyright infringement lawsuit against bitcoin.org by an Australian computer scientist who claims he invented the cryptocurrency.

Craig Wright, who alleges he created bitcoin, will serve the lawsuit against the operator and publisher of the website, which calls itself Cobra.

Wright, who is a UK resident, will be able to pursue the case, even though the defendant might be a resident abroad and has not disclosed a name, identity or address, according to court filings seen by Reuters.

It’s unclear if Cobra will reveal its identity to defend the claim.

The case hangs on who wrote bitcoin’s white paper, the first document explaining the tech behind the cryptocurrency. The report was written under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009.

Although Wright has said that he has evidence to support his claim, it has been widely contested, including by Cobra.

"Bitcoin.org isn't based in the UK and Craig's copyright claims over the whitepaper can be easily verified to be false ...," Cobra messaged Wright's lawyers Ontier over Twitter on Jan. 20, according to court filings seen by the news agency.

Wright reportedly accused Cobra of wrongfully controlling the bitcoin website and has demanded the company take down the white paper.

"The case will turn on whether the court is satisfied that Dr Wright did indeed author – and owns the copyright in – the White Paper and, therefore, that he is Satoshi Nakamoto," said Simon Cohen, a lawyer at Ontier, representing Wright.

A statement from bitcoin.org in January said that the claims were “without merit.”

"We've been threatened to take down the Bitcoin white paper by someone who obviously isn't the inventor of Bitcoin (if he was, that would make him the 25th richest person in the world, which he obviously isn't),” said Cobra in an email to Reuters. "Seems like he's trying to abuse the UK courts to make them try to censor the white paper and harass small websites like us providing education content with his behaviour."

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