Bitcoin.org Operator Cøbra Must Reveal Identity to Defend Themselves, U.K. High Court Rules
The U.K. High Court has rejected an appeal that aimed to protect the anonymity of the pseudonymous operator behind Bitcoin.org, known as Cøbra, stating that allowing them to participate in post-judgment costs proceedings would be an 'infringement on open justice.'
"The pseudonymous operator of a bitcoin website was stuck with the £500,000 ($640,000) legal bill of "computer scientist" Craig Wright after a London judge ruled Monday that participating in the proceedings without revealing its identity would undermine justice, " wrote Law360.
"High Court Judge Richard Smith rejected an appeal by Cøbra and barred the pseudonymous operator of the bitcoin.org website from costs proceedings stemming from a copyright spat with the self-proclaimed bitcoin inventor."
"Lawyers for the website had argued that Wright's claimed costs were "grotesque" and that he had an "obsessive desire" to unmask its personal and corporate identity and is "clearly using the court process for that motive."
"Defendants could be anonymous to the public, but to allow complete anonymity would leave the court unable to verify their identity, Judge Smith said. It would raise the risk of money laundering and reduce efforts to enforce compliance with court orders, he added."
"Unfortunately, the court rules allowed for me to be sued pseudonymously, however, I couldn't defend myself pseudonymously. So I was put in an impossible situation of losing my privacy or losing the case in a default judgment. It sucks, but there's nothing more I could have done, really," Cobra was quoted as saying following the original ruling back in 2021.