The latest bitcoin news indicates that Australian tax authorities are have tightened the noose on Craig Wright – a researcher who’s believed to be the real Satoshi Nakamoto, the bitcoin pseudonymous creator. It is to be remembered that it was only last year December that reputable tech publications such as a Wired and Gizmodo had published detailed reports that pointed towards the possibility that Wright was indeed Satoshi Nakamoto. However, the aftermath of these publications elicited, even more, confusion in Australia, after Newsweek also published report containing evidence that Mr. Nakamoto was an elderly California citizen and not Craig Wright.
Following the wake of these allegations, law enforcement officials and authorities now seem suddenly in the businessman who is widely believed to be the enigma behind the controversial digital currency. For instance, they didn’t hesitate to raid his home and office in Sidney last year on December 9, and currently, a special team from the Australian Tax Office has been contracted with the responsibility of investigating Wright’s tax evasion. If the allegations are anything to go by, Mr. Wright owes the tax man millions of Australian dollars in tax credits.
The Events Are Unconnected
Despite the chain of events that suggests that the authorities’ interests in Wright were sparked off by the latest development in the bitcoin news segment, the official statement from the ATO (Australian Tax Office) has made it clear that the two events are unconnected. This is the line with the fact that their sudden inquiry in Wright’s tax entity affairs began as soon as publications mentioned him as the possible creator of the global digital currency.
What’s more, documentation released by Gizmodo, Wired and Business Insider alludes to the possibility that Wright’s tax woes began as soon as he became a person of interest in the ongoing investigation that has taken bitcoin news by storm.
Insights into the Matter – Where It All Began
Bitcoin news indicates that the 44-year old Australian man was last year thrust into the limelight after a string on emails linked him to the facade behind the mask of Satoshi Nakamoto. And even though the ATO has vehemently denied the connection the two chains of unfolding events, they still think that Wright had created the Satoshi hoax to distract the tax man from snooping around his tax issues. In the light of this, they still believe that Wright has fled the country and he is presently in the UK.
But did the rain start beating him?
Craig Wright’s tax-related bitcoin woes began back in 2013 when he got into a confrontation with the Australian tax authorities after he attempted to launch a bitcoin firm by the name Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence Limited.
Now, according to a document authored by one of Hotwire’s corporate advisory firms, there was bad blood between Hotwire and the ATO. Something which threw a cold blanket on Craig Wright’s business plans in Australia. Also, it is worth noting, nonetheless, that the same publication by Hotwire’s advisory firm – McGrathNicol – centers on the fact that the ATO had once defaulted in agreement where they were to refund over AU$3.4m worth of goods and services to Craig’s Hotwire company. Still on the same bitcoin news, Craig is said to have accrued serious bitcoin lost when the now-defunct-but-once-thriving Japanese bitcoin exchange firm Mt. Gox collapsed.
But is Wright to blame for his problems with the ATO?
Back in February 2014, Wright hit the headlines of various bitcoin news segments across Australia after he was held a meeting with the ATO representatives to push for bitcoins to be recognized as a form of currency. It was also in this meeting that Wright off-handedly admitted that “he had been operating in bitcoins since 2009.” Experts have since maintained that Craig’s intent to have bitcoins classified as a form of currency must have made things difficult for him with the Australian Tax Office.