On a breezy evening of November 16, the famous bitcoin evangelist Andreas Antonopoulos tweeted about his forthcoming role in the high-profile billion-dollar bitcoin lawsuit, Kleiman v. Wright. Antonopoulos said that he would be “testifying at trial” during April 2021, even though Craig Wright’s defense team attempted to exclude him.
It appears the ongoing high-profile lawsuit, Kleiman v. Wright, will proceed into 2021 and maybe even extended depending on the situation with Covid-19. Nevertheless, the courts have announced new information that shows a lot of deliberation and arguments over expert testimony. On November 16, one of the individuals preparing to testify, the bitcoin evangelist and technical author Andreas Antonopoulos, tweeted about his upcoming appearance in the billion-dollar lawsuit.
“The federal court in Kleiman v. Wright has affirmed my status as an expert witness in the case, rejecting the ‘Daubert’ motions by the defense that tried to exclude me and other experts,” Antonopoulos explained. “I will be testifying at trial (sch. for April 2021), as an expert witness,” the bitcoin evangelist added.
The court filing shows that the defendant, Craig Wright, also tried to exclude the plaintiffs’ opinions; Gordon Klein, Dr. Matthew Edman, Stefan Boedeker, and Dr. Robert Leonard.
While addressing Antonopoulos’s expert testimony scheduled for April, the judge explained that particular testimony would be restricted from the trial. For example, Antonopoulos discussed some of the communications allegedly sent by Bitcoin’s creator Satoshi Nakamoto.
The court acknowledges that “[c]ommunications sent by Satoshi Nakamoto are plainly relevant to this litigation.” However, the court favored the defendant’s recent motion, and even though Antonopoulos can discuss historical public communications and the emails sent by Satoshi, “an actual opinion must be connected to such testimony.”
The judge ruled that,
“Merely reading a post or emails located on a public forum is not an ‘opinion’ nor would the jury require expert assistance in performing such a task.”
Adding to this, Wright’s legal team challenged another part of the Antonopoulos’ report titled an “Analysis of Address Lists.” Wright’s attorney’s argued that they are “anonymously-sourced documents that cannot be authenticated and include hearsay messages that attack the defendant’s character.” In particular, one message that was sent on May 4, 2019, the court agrees might be a “backdoor attempt to attack [the] defendant’s character for truthfulness.”
Florida Judge Beth Bloom wrote,
“Although it is one thing for an expert to represent generally that a message was sent from an individual not purporting to be [the] defendant using a bitcoin address defendant claimed as his own,”
She also added that,
“It is entirely different to have an expert testify that, as part of forming his opinions, the message ‘Craig is a liar and a fraud’ was transacted.”
So the court decided to side with Wright’s argument, and Antonopoulos “may not disclose the content of the May 4, 2019 message.”
The billion-dollar bitcoin lawsuit is still uncertain today, and it seems it will continue to drag on for quite some time. So far, the court case has been going on for 1,007 days. When the Kleiman estate first took Wright to court, they claimed the value of the assets “far exceed $5.1 [billion] USD before punitive or treble damages.”
Due to the mysterious nature of the Kleiman v. Wright case involving Satoshi Nakamoto and billions of dollars in assets, the court docket is one of the most famous dockets in the U.S. and a top ten lawsuit in the state of Florida.
What’s your thought about the ongoing Kleiman v. Wright case and the upcoming expert testimony from the famous bitcoin evangelist Andreas Antonopoulos? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.