As we reported yesterday here at NewsBTC, the hot new rumor in the Bitcoin space is that a relative unknown, Craig Steven Wright, may be Satoshi Nakamoto, the inventor of the digital currency Bitcoin. This idea was spread by WIRED Magazine and Gizmodo on Tuesday, but the rumor may have been started by Wright, himself, after his recent Skype call to Bitcoin Investor’s Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. Regardless of the origin, this new shot of fame coincides with a fair amount of personal turmoil, as Wright’s home has just been been the subject of a police raid in Australia.
Reuters reports that this police investigation extends beyond his home, and they have also taken control of his two listed corporate locations, DeMorgan Ltd and Panopticrypt Pty Ltd. DeMorgan Ltd. is listed by Wright as “a pre-IPO Australian listed company focused on alternative currency.” All that a policeman at the scene would say about the action is “There’s an operation going on at the moment; I can’t answer any questions.”
It appears the timing of the police raids was not a coincidence, as the owner of the home Wright and his family were residing in, Garry Hayres, told Reuters. Wright lived in the home for a year and was due to move to Britain on December 22nd. According to Hayres, Wright had a “substantial computer system set-up” and had attached a “three-phase” power system to the house for more electrical power.
The Australian Federal Police said in a prepared statement that the police’s “presence at Mr. Wright’s property is not associated with the media reporting overnight about bitcoins.” AFP (Australian Federal Police) are implying that this a tax-related matter, and are referring further inquiries to the Australian Tax Office.
Craig Steven Wright was a relative unknown before his Skype call to the conference in Las Vegas. He seems taken with the idea that he did invent Bitcoin, being quoted at the Bitcoin Investor’s Conference as saying “I have a Master’s in law…a Master’s in statistics, a couple of Doctorates. I’ve been involved with all (Bitcoin) for a long time. I…..try and stay….I keep my head down.”
Potentially central to this current police investigation, there is a matter of public record on the corporate advisory firm McGrathNicol’s website. A report there shows the amount of Bitcoin listed as being held by Wright. In 2013, Wright started a company called HotWire, which was funded by approximately $23 million in bitcoins owned by Wright that are now worth approximately $60 million.