Hodlonaut Wins Norway Trial against Craig Wright over Alleged Defamation

UTC by Tolu Ajiboye · 3 min read
Hodlonaut Wins Norway Trial against Craig Wright over Alleged Defamation
Photo: Unsplash

Magnus Granath, AKA Hodlonaut was recently acquitted by a judge to end the defamation trial against Craig Wright in Norway.

Australian computer scientist and crypto devotee Craig Wright has lost his lawsuit against Hodlonaut in Norway over Satoshi Nakamoto claims. Although Wright has long claimed to be the pseudonymous Bitcoin creator, Hodlonaut and several others publicly oppose these claims.

Hodlonaut, the Twitter name for Mr. Magnus Granath, took to the microblogging platform to state “I won. Welcome to law”. This was in response to the Norwegian judge’s decision in his favor. Furthermore, Hodlonaut’s short statement is a callback to Wright’s “welcome to law” threat issued against Hodlonaut and several others in 2019.

In a media statement to Decrypt, Hodlonaut also revealed that he had no doubts about eventual victory, considering supporting evidence. According to him:

“I expected to win, since truth is so clearly on my side in this case. I am very happy that the judge saw it the same way.”

Hodlonaut had filed the case in Norway against Craig Wright to exonerate himself. This came after Wright had accused him of defamation regarding a series of tweets he published on the self-proclaimed Bitcoin creator. Furthermore, Hodlonaut’s Norwegian case against Wright was filed to get ahead of a similar pending defamation case in the UK.

Hearings for the Norwegian case began last month on September 12.

The Hodlonaut and Craig Wright Lawsuit Before Norway Defamation Trial

Back in 2019, Granath, AKA Hodlonaut, referred to Wright as a “pathetic scammer” and a “cringe”. In addition, Granath also described the Australian as “clearly mentally ill,” even calling him a “fraud” on numerous occasions. During the trial, Wright referred to these statements as highly defamatory.

In her ruling, Judge Helen Engebrigtsen wrote that Hodlonaut was within his rights to accuse Wright of pretending to be Nakamoto. According to her, Granath “had sufficient factual grounds” to accuse Wright of lying and cheating in his attempt to prove that he is Satoshi Nakamoto. Engebrigtsen further declared Granath acquitted of all claims for compensation. Furthermore, the Oslo judge also found him not liable for damages relating to the tweets. Engebrigtsen also ordered Wright to pay Granath’s legal fees, roughly $383,000.

Following the verdict, Granath’s lawyer, Ørjan Salvesen Haukaas, appeared positive about the outcome. Though he said he would review it further, he expressed his contentment in an email statement that read:

“We note that the court has agreed with our arguments and our client’s position in the case, and we are of course happy with that.”

During the weeks-long trial in Oslo, Granath appeared to have several supporters. For instance, there is a donation page link from a website called DefendingBTC where approximately 2,700 individuals reportedly made vast donations. This amounted to $74,000 and more than 71 BTC for Granath’s legal defense fees. The Bitcoiner also had the support of Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, who tweeted that Wright is not Satoshi.

Bitcoin News, Cryptocurrency news, News
Tolu Ajiboye
Author Tolu Ajiboye

Tolu is a cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiast based in Lagos. He likes to demystify crypto stories to the bare basics so that anyone anywhere can understand without too much background knowledge. When he's not neck-deep in crypto stories, Tolu enjoys music, loves to sing and is an avid movie lover.

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