Attorney Brian E. Klein, who represents the co-founder of Bitcoin Foundation Charlie Shrem in the ongoing litigation initiated by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, addressed Winklevosses’ claims of alleged BTC theft with a filing, which states that his client “committed no misconduct”.
“Shrem can show by verifiable evidence that he did not take the 5,000 bitcoins (the Winklevosses) accuse him of taking,” – the filing reads.
The essence of the claim filed by the co-founders of Gemini crypto exchange is that Shrem had allegedly embezzled a fraction of the sum received from the Winklevoss twins back in 2012 when they were his business partners.
As specified by the New York Times, the Winklevoss brothers allegedly gave Shrem $750 000 to buy BTC for them “from other deep-pocketed investors” at the time. According to the claimants, a few months into this partnership, Shrem withheld $61 000 worth of bitcoins (about 5 000 BTC, as per the price at the time), this debt still remaining unpaid to date.
It is further stated in the claim that a private investigator hired by the brothers managed to trace the transfer of stolen funds to cryptocurrency wallets on Xapo and Coinbase exchanges.
Klein, however, denied these allegations altogether:
“The true facts are that Shrem paid a portion of the money owed before he knew of the (Winklevosses’) complaint, and is in the process of paying the rest,” – he wrote in his filing.
It is also worth noting, that the case is being heard by Judge Jed S. Rakoff, who imposed Shrem’s 2-year sentence for alleged facilitation of drug purchasing using bitcoins in 2014. Judge Rakoff has reportedly ruled to freeze Shrem’s accounts on Xapo and Coinbase, while also noting that the defendant had “evidenced an intent to frustrate the collection efforts of his creditors.”
The defense, nevertheless, affirmed that “Charlie plans to vigorously defend himself and quickly clear his name.”