Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey has launched a defense fund designed to save Bitcoin developers from “legal headaches” and fund a battle against a man who claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto.
Dorsey wrote an open letter to developers announcing the founding of a non-profit entity called the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund.
“The Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund is a nonprofit entity that aims to minimize legal headaches that discourage software developers from actively developing Bitcoin and related projects such as the Lightning Network, Bitcoin privacy protocols, and the like,” Dorsey wrote.
“The main purpose of this Fund is to defend developers from lawsuits regarding their activities in the Bitcoin ecosystem, including finding and retaining defense counsel, developing litigation strategy, and paying legal bills. This is a free and voluntary option for developers to take advantage of if they so wish. The Fund will start with a corps of volunteer and part-time lawyers. The board of the Fund will be responsible for determining which lawsuits and defendants it will help defend.”
This first job of the fund will involve paying for the defense software developers locked in a lawsuit brought by Tulip Trading, a company associated with Dr. Craig Wright – who famously identified himself as the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin.
“The Fund’s first activities will be to take over coordination of the existing defense of the Tulip Trading lawsuit against certain developers alleging breach of fiduciary duty and provide the source of funding for outside counsel,” Dorsey and other members of ??the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund Board wrote in their email.
“At this time, the Fund is not seeking to raise additional money for its operations but will do so at the direction of the board if needed for further legal action or to pay for staff.”
Craig Wright is currently locked in various complex legal cases, including a lawsuit against Ira Kleiman, a representative of the Estate of the late David Kleiman – who Wright described as a “friend”.
Wright and Kleiman worked together, forming a company called W&K and mining Bitcoins now worth billions of dollars.
When David Kleiman died, his brother Ira is alleged to have “systematically destroyed documents and electronic data that would have contained the private keys and information regarding those keys needed to access any bitcoins held by W&K”.
Ira Kleiman also sued Craig Wright over claims that a cache of Bitcoin “misappropriated”. However, in December Wright won a victory again Kleiman after a federal jury found that the man who claims to be Satoshi did not have a business relationship with Dave Kleiman, but still owes W&K $100million in compensatory damages.
Wright has also launched a London High Court lawsuit against 16 software developers in a bit to retrieve 111,000 Bitcoins held at addresses he does not have private keys to access. Wright claimed he lost the keys when his computer was hacked.
The case was brought against the developers of Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV), Bitcoin Core (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), and Bitcoin Cash ABC (ABC).
Any developer who finds themselves fighting a legal battle may now be able to call on Dorsey for financial assistance.