Satoshi Nakamoto Trial Day 12: Who is Dave Kleiman?
Three of David Kleiman’s closest friends have testified on day 12 of the Kleiman v Wright civil trial, providing a clearer image of who David Kleiman really was while he was still alive.
David Kleiman is purportedly Craig Wright’s partner in writing the Bitcoin white paper under the Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym and business partner in mining 1.1 million bitcoins now worth about $65 billion, according to his brother Ira Kleiman who represents David Kleiman’s estate.
The plaintiff rested their case on Day 10 of the trial, and it is now the defense’s turn to call in their witnesses and present evidence. The first of David Kleiman’s friends to be called in is former colleague at a security company Kimon Andreou, followed by business partner in a computer forensics firm Carter Conrad, as well as accountant David Kuharcik. So, who was David Kleiman from the point of view of his friends?
Who was David Kleiman?
All of David Kleiman’s friends who have testified in court, including business partner Patrick Paige and Wright who gave their testimonies earlier for the plaintiff, have said that David Kleiman was someone who was easy to get along with, witty, funny and full of life.
It can be deduced from these testimonies that David Kleiman was an honest man who died tragically, in extreme physical pain and in a mountain of debt. And if David Kleiman owned some Bitcoin, he would have already sold them to improve his dire financial situation–documents show that David Kleiman had taken out a second mortgage on his house and could not afford to pay his cell phone bill.
“I struggle with that, [Dave was in a bad financial situation, his health was not good] I struggle with the idea that if he had any kind of assets that he would not use them,” Conrad said.
This was in response to defense counsel Jorge Mestre’s question if he thinks David Kleiman would have sold whatever assets he had to pay off his debts in a redirect. Conrad, a computer and security expert himself, earlier confirmed to plaintiff lawyer Andrew Brenner that it was possible for David Kleiman to remotely have access to a Bitcoin mining facility.
It can also be surmised that it would be a contradiction to David Kleiman’s personality for him to lay claim to something that was not rightfully his. He was an all-around stand-up guy, a former police officer, who his friends seemed to sincerely and genuinely love.
And this was probably why David Kleiman did not do anything that would remotely ask for credit in writing the Bitcoin white paper or lay claim to half of the Satoshi coins. And this was also probably why even though David Kleiman had Paige and Conrad sign a lengthy operating agreement for their computer forensics company, there is no evidence to be found of a business partnership agreement between David Kleiman and Wright in mining the Satoshi coins.
Did David Kleiman talk about creating or mining Bitcoin to his closest friends?
No witness has ever said anything negative about David Kleiman. David Kleiman also did not have anything but praise for Wright; Andreou even testified that David Kleiman was excited to be working with Wright on the Hard Drive Wiping white paper they wrote together.
However, none of David Kleiman’s closest friends who had taken the stand heard anything about writing the Bitcoin white paper or mining Bitcoin from David Kleiman. In fact, not once did David Kleiman mention Bitcoin—at least to Paige, Andreou and Conrad. Kuharcik has yet to finish his testimony.
Andreou had been close friends with David Kleiman since the 1990s and was the only one so far to have consistently visited him in the two years, five months and two days that David Kleiman was hospitalized, having dinner together during weekdays after Andreou’s work and talking about everything under the sun.
It must be remembered that Ira Kleiman said under oath that David Kleiman had spoken about Bitcoin to one of his friends. Brenner then cross-examines Andreou, who is supposed to be his friend.
“If all the docs are authentic and with the addition of anecdotal info we have from discussions with Dave, all signs point to Dave and Craig indeed being behind Bitcoin… I’m convinced Craig and Dave are the co-creators of Bitcoin,” read an email from Andreou to Ira Kleiman.
Brenner wanted to point out that the “we” mentioned in the email were Andreou and David Kleiman having discussions about Bitcoin. However, Andreou clarified that David Kleiman never talked about Bitcoin with him and that the “we” in his email was indicative of a group of people Andreou knew who talked about how David Kleiman could have created Bitcoin after news of David Kleiman’s alleged involvement had already surfaced.
Because Kuharcik was also David Kleiman’s accountant, the defense was not able to move forward with their questioning due to objections about accountant-client privilege that Judge Beth Bloom sustained and was strictly upholding. Kuharcik’s testimony will continue Friday.
The 12th trial day, in summary
The 12th day of the Kleiman v Wright trial has shown what kind of person David Kleiman was. He was a great guy who, sadly, met a tragic end due to a severe medical condition amid a desperate financial situation. According to Conrad’s statement, David Kleiman was someone who would have liquidated whatever his assets to improve his situation–yet there is no evidence of him selling Bitcoin.
David Kleiman never mentioned Bitcoin to his closest friends and although it is known that he was knowledgeable in having operating agreements signed with Paige and Conrad, he never had one with Wright in connection with mining Bitcoin, as claimed by Ira Kleiman.
While he spoke excitedly about the white paper about hard drive integrity he co-wrote with Wright to Andreou, David Kleiman never spoke to anyone about writing the Bitcoin white paper nor working with Wright under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.
All of the testimonies Thursday so far reinforce the theory that Wright may be telling the truth in claiming that he was the sole person behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.