VR Firm Magic Leap Seeks Blockchain Engineers for User Data

VR Firm Magic Leap Seeks Blockchain Engineers for User Data


Virtual reality (VR) startup Magic Leap is seeking blockchain engineers

according to recent listings on employment website Greenhouse. The firm is looking for a senior blockchain architect and blockchain engineers. Among the duties listed for the senior blockchain architect position, the individual will be “planning and execution of a portfolio of blockchain, smart contract, and Ricardian contract technologies in support of the implementation of our Lifestream business function.”

In a recent interview with VR industry publication UploadVR, Magic Leap CEO Rony Abovitz said that Lifestream is: “all the data that you experience and the data of the world around you and how that needs to be protected…” At a conference last October, he noted the importance of protecting the data set, which he characterized as critical.

The job listing seeks an individual with experience in the Red Belly and Hyperledger blockchain frameworks and experience with Java, Node,js, Python or Go. Magic Leap also prefers that the engineer has experience writing smart contracts for blockchain networks like Hyperledger Fabric, Hyperledger  Sawtooth, Ethereum and Corda. Magic Leap has grown significantly since its inception in 2010. Crunchbase reported last year that the firm is the top-funded VR startup on the market, having aggregated 41% of VC funding in the VR market worldwide in 2018.  

Earlier this month, Ethereum-based digital asset tokenization startup Enjin announced that it will launch a Software Development Kit for the Unity game engine, which supports VR and augmented reality app development.

Article Produced By
Aaron Wood

Aaron Wood is an editor at Cointelegraph, with a background in energy and economics. He keeps an eye on Blockchain's applications in building smarter and more equitable energy access globally.


US Justice Dept Convicts Two Romanians of Cybercrimes Including Cryptojacking

US Justice Dept. Convicts Two Romanians of Cybercrimes Including Cryptojacking


A federal jury has convicted two Romanian alleged cybercriminals

of spreading malware to steal credit card credentials and illicitly mine cryptocurrency, an announcement from the official website of the United States Department of Justice revealed on April 11. The malware allegedly spread by the suspects was reportedly used for cryptojacking and to steal credit card and other data that the suspects would have sold on darknet markets and used to engage in online auction fraud. As the Justice Department press release reports, Bogdan Nicolescu, 36, and Radu Miclaus, 37, were convicted after a 12-day trial. The two individuals were charged with wire fraud, conspiracy to traffic in counterfeit service marks, aggravated identity theft, conspiracy to commit money laundering and 12 counts each of wire fraud.

The two are scheduled to be sentenced on August 14 this year in the Northern District of Ohio. The activity was allegedly conducted as a “criminal conspiracy” from Bucharest, Romania, by the aforementioned suspects and another person who pleaded guilty. The malware itself was reportedly developed in 2007 and then spread via emails posing as legitimate communications from entities like Western Union, Norton AntiVirus and the Internal Revenue Service.

As the press release explains, the recipients that clicked on the attached file in such an email had malware installed on their devices. The malware also harvested email addresses from the contact lists of the victims. The infected computers also reportedly registered over 100,000 AOL email accounts that were used to spread the malware further with millions of emails sent to the stolen addresses.

The virus also purportedly redirected traffic to major websites such as Facebook, PayPal, eBay to a near identical version meant for phishing to obtain access credentials. The stolen credentials were reportedly used to rent server space, register domain names and pay for anonymization services. Lastly, the report also specifies that the case was jointly investigated by the U.S. Federal Investigation Bureau and the Romanian National Police.

As Cointelegraph reported earlier this week, Bitcoin (BTC) wallet service Electrum is facing an ongoing Denial-of-Service attack on its servers and users have reportedly lost millions of dollars. In a report from last month by AT&T Cybersecurity, it was revealed that cryptocurrency mining is one of the most observed objectives of hackers attacking businesses’ cloud infrastructures. At the end of March, news broke that a new strain of Trojan malware for Android phones is targeting global users of top crypto apps such as Coinbase, BitPay and Bitcoin Wallet, as well as banks including JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America.

Article Produced By
Adrian Zmudzinski

Adrian is a newswriter based out of Pisa, Italy. He's passionate about cryptocurrency, digital rights, IT, tech and futurology and likes to think about the future in a positive way.


Coinbase Loses 3 Senior Executives in 6 Months as Dan Romero Quits Position

Coinbase Loses 3 Senior Executives in 6 Months as Dan Romero Quits Position


United States cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase

has lost another senior executive as its head of international, Dan Romero, announced his resignation in a blog post on April 12. Romero, who worked for five years at the company in various positions, follows director of institutional sales, Christine Sandler, and ex-vice president and general manager, Adam White in quitting the firm. Sandler left in March to join pro-crypto financial services giant Fidelity Investments, while White sought new pastures in October last year.

Romero had also worked in White’s role, and his departure continues a winding down of institution-focused activity at Coinbase. While continuing its expansion, retail and cryptocurrency industry business now forms a priority for the exchange. “After 5 years, I’m leaving Coinbase at the end of the month,” Romero confirmed in his post,


“I’m planning to take some time to figure out what’s next, but I remain as optimistic as ever about the potential of cryptocurrency and Coinbase.”

“An increasing number of cryptocurrency entrepreneurs are quietly building the infrastructure necessary for a more open, permissionless and decentralized version of the Internet and the global financial system,” Romero continued. As Cointelegraph reported, Coinbase branched out into international payments at the start of this month, followed this week by the launch of a dedicated cryptocurrency Visa card for its United Kingdom market. LinkedIn included Coinbase in its list of top 50 most popular U.S. companies in April, the company being the only one from the crypto sector to make the latest rankings.

Article Produced By
William Suberg

William Suberg got into Bitcoin while completing his Masters degree and hasn't looked back since, writing about anything crypto-related which makes him sit up and pay attention. He started working with Cointelegraph in October 2013.



Goldman Sachs CEO Refutes Bank Ever Had Plans to Open Crypto Trading Desk

Goldman Sachs CEO Refutes Bank Ever Had Plans to Open Crypto Trading Desk


Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon has categorically refuted

that the bank ever had any plans to open a crypto trading desk and stated that earlier media reports suggesting otherwise were incorrect.  Solomon made his remarks before the United States House of Representatives Financial Services Committee on April 10, during a hearing entitled “Holding Megabanks Accountable: A Review of Global Systemically Important Banks 10 years after the Financial Crisis.”

As previously reported, Goldman Sachs’ alleged plans to create a crypto-focused unit by the end of June 2018 were originally covered in a December 2017 report from Bloomberg. In September 2018, unnamed sources told Business Insider that the project had been put on hold. Several days later, the firm’s chief financial officer, Martin Chavez, told reporters that the recent reports were “fake news.” In his remarks, Solomon said that Goldman Sachs has engaged with clients that are involved in clearing physically-settled crypto futures, but that alleged trading desk plans

were false:

“The first [Bloomberg article] wasn’t correct. Like others, we are watching and […] doing work to try to understand the cryptocurrency market as it develops […] but we never had plans to open a cryptocurrency trading desk.”

Notably, the CEO did not rule out such a move from the bank in the future,

stating that:

“We might at some point in time, but there’s no question, when you’re dealing with cryptocurrency, it’s a new area […] it is unclear from a regulatory perspective, it’s unclear whether […] in the long run, as a currency, those technologies are going to work and be viable.”

Ohio Republican Congressman Warren Davidson, who was questioning Solomon over the media reports, himself voiced his belief that the U.S. is lagging behind other countries and failing to “take advantage of this thriving sector [crypto]” due to regulatory uncertainty. As Cointelegraph previously reported, other CEOs in attendance at the hearing included JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, who affirmed the value of blockchain technology but reiterated his belief that decentralized cryptocurrencies do not have any intrinsic value. A bipartisan bill to exclude cryptocurrencies from being classified as securities and foster more regulatory clarity for crypto — first proposed by Rep. Davidson and Democratic Congressman Darren Soto in December 2018 — was reintroduced in a revised form to Congress this week.

Article Produced By
Marie Huillet

Marie Huillet is an independent filmmaker, with a background in journalism and publishing. Nomadic by nature, she’s lived in five different countries this decade. She’s fascinated by Blockchain technologies’ potential to reshape all aspects of our lives.


Tata Consultancy Services Powers Blockchain-Based Cross-Border Securities Settlement

Tata Consultancy Services Powers Blockchain-Based Cross-Border Securities Settlement


Indian IT services company Tata Consultancy Services (TCS)

announced on April 10 that it carried out what it defines as the world's first cross-border securities settlement between two central depositories using the Quartz blockchain. The Central Securities Depositories (CSD) involved are reportedly Maroclear, the CSD of Morocco, and Kuwait Clearing Company, the CSD of Kuwait. During the test, a set of equities and fixed income securities from both markets were created on the chain along with accounts to hold them, and were instantaneously transferred.

The system reportedly used cash coins on the BaNCS Network, powered by the Quartz blockchain. The announcement explains that cash coins are a digital asset pegged to a fiat currency and maintained on the network. Per the report, the network is a private permissioned blockchain aimed to let customers in the banking, market infrastructure, custody and insurance industries collaborate by connecting to a single ledger. The post claims that 450 TCS customers have access to the BaNCS network. According to CrunchBase data, TCS has $15.4 billion in revenue annually; its parent company, Tata Group, reportedly has $100.4 billion.

As Cointelegraph reported yesterday, the Mauritius Financial Services Commission has issued a second guidance note concerning security token offering regulation. Also, at the beginning of the current month, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission revealed that it is looking to hire a crypto specialist attorney advisor for its Division of Trading and Markets tasked with establishing “a comprehensive plan to address crypto and digital asset securities.”

Article Produced By
Adrian Zmudzinski

Adrian is a newswriter based out of Pisa, Italy. He's passionate about cryptocurrency, digital rights, IT, tech and futurology and likes to think about the future in a positive way.



Zcash Exercises Restraint as the Antminer Z11 Release Approaches

Zcash Exercises Restraint as the Antminer Z11 Release Approaches


Bitmain, the largest manufacturer of mining equipment,

recently revealed the Antminer Z11 device for mining Zcash and other cryptocurrencies based on the Equihash algorithm, as reported by Cointelegraph on March 19. The company claims that the new chip is three times more powerful than its predecessor, the Antminer Z9, which was

released nine months ago.

Introducing the #AntminerZ11 that packs 3X more hashing power than its predecessor! The Z11 mines #Zcash under the Equihash algorithm. Performing with a hash rate of 135 KSol/s and power consumption of 1418 W.

Despite the fact that the Zcash team declined to comment on this news, the release of the Z11 produced mixed reactions among community members. Some of them believe that this is a new threat to network security, while others see the release as a potential for the growth of the coin’s price.

ASIC resistance campaign

In 2017, after Bitmain's dominance of the ASIC market reached a peak with the release of Bitcoin (BTC) mining equipment, the Chinese giant set about developing specialized chips for mining other coins with large market capitalizations, such as Ethereum (ETH), SiaCoin (SIA), Monero (XMR) and Zcash (ZEC). High-performance miners allowed their operators to quickly gain a significant amount of coins, while the owners of such farms could also launch 51 percent attacks that allow one to usurp control of the network and manipulate transactions.

Some developers decided to go along the path of changing their algorithms in order to make the network ASIC-resistant. Take, for example, Monero, which hard forked their network on April 6, 2018, after Bitmain announced the release of Antminer X3. The same path was chosen by Bitcoin Gold (BTG), which forked its network on July 3 after the Antminer Z9 was released. After a lengthy debate, the Ethereum team made partial modifications to the network on the way to its transition from proof-of-work (PoW) to programmatic proof-of-work (ProgPoW). The hard fork was implemented on Feb. 28 this year.

Other projects abandoned the idea of ASIC resistance, and among them was Zcash. On May 3, 2018, Bitmain announced the release of the Z9 mini model for mining Zcash and other coins based on the Equihash algorithm. Zooko Wilcox, co-founder and CEO of the company, took a neutral position on the issue of ASIC resistance, saying that no changes to the network were planned. Later, a survey was conducted among members of the Zcash community, and the results showed that the majority of respondents voted against prioritizing ASIC resistance policy.

Meet Z11

Typically, Bitmain announces its new models shortly before the start of sales, and this is exactly what they did with the Antminer Z11. On March 19, Bitmain announced the release of a new model for mining Equihash-powered coins, and the firm explained that the chip would be three times more powerful than the previous generation Z9 device. This time, Bitmain decided not to limit itself to the technical description of the product and made a special announcement paying specific attention to the Zcash community. The company promised to provide real-time updates on the volumes of supplies and its own equipment stocks, as well as to

fight "hidden" mining:

“To preserve the Zcash community’s values around security, reliability and accessibility, Bitmain had previously Tweeted real-time updates to ensure more transparency and will continue to provide shipping updates of the first batch of the Antminer Z11. These commitments to transparency will continue to provide the Zcash foundation and community with the security, reliability and accessibility they desire of manufacturers.”

According to the manufacturer, the computing power of Antminer Z11 is 135 kilo solutions (135,000) per second (KSol/s). At the same time, energy efficiency of the device reaches 10.50 joules per kilo solutions J/KSol. The miner is based on a 12-nanometer chip developed using Bare Die casting technology for the best heat dissipation. This allows for a decrease in the cost of electricity by 60 percent in comparison with the Antminer Z9.

Sold out in 20 minutes

According to the manufacturer, the first batch of new miners was sold out just 20 minutes after the presale started, and some users believe this could be an orchestrated strategy designed to increase the price. It is noteworthy that, even after the tag “Sold Out” appeared, the price continued to increase. On the official forum, Zcash moderators raised an entire discussion to find out who managed to buy new ASICs and for how much. Users replied with numbers ranging from $1,048 to $1,366, and at the moment, Bitmain’s website has the Antminer Z11 listed for $1,384.

Buyers will receive their first devices between April 20 and 30, as stated on Bitmain’s site. Despite the fact that the main sales are oriented to those who want to mine Zcash — the most liquid coin using the Equihash algorithm — it will be possible to use the Antminer Z11 to get other assets working on the same principle. According to WhatToMine, miners will be able to switch powers for mining coins such as Komodo (KMD), Zcash Classic (ZCL) or Horizen (ZEN), although the solution will not be as profitable.

Community’s reaction

While some users are calculating the return generated by the new model and rejoicing at the coin’s price growth, others are still concerned about the “fact” that the first batch sold out so quickly. Some suggest that this could be a specific group of people — or even a country — in whose hands the network’s hash rate could now be concentrated. In general, in the community, as well as in the Zcash headquarters, few seem to be concerned about the potential threat from Bitmain. However, there are those who are worried about the possibility of centralization, and users are perplexed by the fact that, from their point of view, developers

have been inactive.

“why do devs keep on with asics? earlier it was a disaster. what have changed? why noone doing nothing, while zcash being destroyed?”

Some users suggested a variety of solutions, including switching to proof-of-stake (PoS) and incorporating

new modifications.

“Maybe devs should include a new attack vector, (mass) infected Asics …”

There are also users who refer to the recent hard fork Monero implemented on March 9 as part of the roadmap for preventing manipulations associated with ASIC miners. This is the second time the Monero developers forked the network to fight new Antminers by Bitmain. The first fork was held on April 6, 2018 after the release of Antminer A3. At the same time, in both cases, immediately after the network upgrade, the network’s hash rate fell by 80 percent. Despite the lack of drastic action on the part of Zcash developers, the team began to explore the potential and possible danger of new ASIC devices immediately after the release of Antminer Z9.

On May 8, 2018, Zcash CEO Josh Cincinnati announced a plan for prioritizing ASIC resistance, and he indicated that the team considered the implementation of these measures as one of the methods in combating ASIC hardware. One of the factors complicating such work, as stated by Cincinnati, was Wilcox’s ambivalence to ASIC resistance. To decide which side to take on the issue of ASIC devices, users were offered a vote. The results showed that community members put other areas of the company's development above the fight against ASICs.

However, Zcash creators announced the beginning of a study to examine the possibilities of new miners, as well as the development of a strategy to combat them. Among the measures discussed were independent, consensus-compatible implementation of full-node software, and hiring developers to work on Zcash Improvement Proposals (ZIPs) in order to minimize the impact of such devices on the network.

Another ASIC resistance strategy appeared in the course of the annual grant program for Zcash developers. As a result, founders selected projects that offered a modification of the current Equihash algorithm or a transition to more ASIC-stable ProgPoW. In particular, one of the teams began to work on the transition to a more ASIC-resistant, but GPU-friendly ProgPoW algorithm. How soon the results of such work will appear is so far unknown.

Positive changes

After the announcement of the Antminer Z11’s release, ZEC’s price surged from $49.03 by 5 percent in 24 hours and by 20 percent in 11 days. In addition, over the past two weeks, the coin has appeared on new exchanges, and Binance has added new currencies paired with ZEC. Some of the users suggested that the coin owes its popularity to Bitmain and its

high-performance ASICs.

The Zcash hashrate support is largely due to its ASIC is the most profitability miners among all. The strong support of hashrate for $DASH might be also related to this (before is ranking of mining profitability) Another point supports why ASIC is a better security model for PoW

In addition, launching a 51 percent attack on the Zcash network, which in January would have cost $12,000, now costs a potential attacker $28,920.

Progress does not stand still

Earlier, Equihash was considered one of the most robust algorithms for ASIC miners. However, the release of the Antminer Z9 and Z11 are proof that blockchain is not an obstacle to the development of such devices. According to Ethereum developer David Vorik, the implementation of ProgPoW can contribute to the distinct advantage for particular major manufacturers of mining equipment, as the need for more complex devices will exacerbate the effect of scale. At the same time, a tough fight against ASIC devices may force producers to carry out hidden manufacturing, which can lead to an even greater concentration of power in one hand. Another Ethereum developer, Alexey Akhunov,

said in a reply message:

“If we want to obsolete the current EtHash mining devices, but at the same time not to induce more secretive behaviour on the part of ASIC manufacturers, we need to ‘embrace’ it and switch to an ASIC-friendly algorithm now instead of an ASIC-unfriendly algorithm. Which [is] the opposite of what we are doing.”

He added that the best method forward might be a diplomatic strategy and transparent dialogue for dealing with manufacturers of

ASIC equipment.

It would actually be great to establish a transparent dialog of developers with an ASIC manufacturer like Linzhi. Ethereum Core devs lack this kind of expertise, and more open info about ASIC capabilities would help a lot!

Article Produced By
Julia Magas

Julia is good at analysing cryptocurrency and blockchain market, as well as finding the deep and most demanding information, even when it's practically impossible. Julia writes for a number of digital information resources, raging from music to technology and game reviews. Practices some trading for experimental and analytical purposes.


Japanese Regulator FSA Hears Arguments for not Calling Bitcoin a Virtual Currency

Japanese Regulator FSA Hears Arguments for not Calling Bitcoin a Virtual Currency


Japanese finance regulator the Financial Services Agency (FSA)

no longer wishes to describe Bitcoin (BTC) as a virtual currency, Cointelegraph Japan reported on April 8, quoting minutes of a meeting originally held on March 4. During a plenary session at the 41st General Assembly of the Financial Council and the 29th Financial Division Meeting, Professor Iwashita Goto of the Public Policy Graduate School of Kyoto University, petitioned members to adapt their view of Bitcoin.

The largest cryptocurrency, he argued, has become something beyond a means of transacting, due to its borderless qualities, which have led it to appear throughout the world in its ten-year history. “I don't think it would be worthwhile to call Bitcoin a virtual currency,” he summarized. The comments come as Japan continues to formalize its domestic cryptocurrency industry. Set on creating encouraging regulation, the FSA has now begun issuing licenses to new cryptocurrency exchanges looking to serve the Japanese market.

The licensing scheme, which has a long waiting list, was in part a reaction to the events of the past two years, notably local exchange Coincheck’s half-billion-dollar hack in January 2018. Other industry consumer products also continue to see a rollout in the country, such as plans for train travel payment using cryptocurrency. Last week, Japanese trading platform Liquid achieved unicorn status after it was valued at more than $1 billion.

Article Produced By
William Suberg

William Suberg got into Bitcoin while completing his Masters degree and hasn't looked back since, writing about anything crypto-related which makes him sit up and pay attention. He started working with Cointelegraph in October 2013.


EU Blockchain Observatory Releases Report on Tokenization AI and IoT

EU Blockchain Observatory Releases Report on Tokenization, AI and IoT


The European Union Blockchain Observatory and Forum

released a report entitled “Tokenization of physical assets and the impact of IoT and AI” on April 10. The report, authored by Dr. Tim Weingärtner, a professor at Lucerne University of Applied Sciences & Arts – School for Information Technology, features the “digital twin” concept, which refers to a digital replica of the physical world. This mirror world would be consist of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, big data, tokens representing physical objects, blockchain as a trusted ledger and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

The report notes that blockchain would play a key role in this digital transformation by providing trust and allowing the identification and tokenization of physical objects. Blockchain-based smart contracts also play their part, the report argues, by providing a tamper-proof computational environment and automatic execution of financial actions through the use of cryptocurrencies. The document highlights the importance of tokens and cites the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain as currently the most important platform for the creation of tokens. According to the author, this platform is preferable due to the potential of its programming language, its large community, working implementations and existing code examples.

The report concludes that the combination of IoT with blockchain would allow for better supply chain management, increased trust that enables the sharing economy to grow, data trading and monetization, identity management and automatization. Combining AI with decentralized technology would instead democratize data, assure its authenticity, audit smart contracts and explain AI decisions. At the same time, the report claims, robots and drones would be “the actuators of the digital world,” since they would allow the intervention of the digital world in the physical world. The document expects the digital twin concept to

become increasingly important:

“Due to the exponential growth, which is described by Moore’s Law and many studies, the physical world will be exceeded by the digital world in the coming years. This means that speed, growth and complexity will increase by a multiple.”

Moore’s law refers to the observation — made by Intel’s CEO Gordon Moore in 1965 — that the number of transistors in dense integrated circuits doubles roughly every two years. However, the report fails to mention that the rate of progress in fitting more transistors in less space is slowing down. Furthermore, the scale of transistors is currently approaching an ultimate limit because of a quantum property known as quantum tunneling.

Moreover, progress is being made to continue the development of alternative processing technologies such as quantum computing, optical computing and neuromorphic computing. Such technologies could permit the continuation of the trend towards increasing available computing power. In March, a different report released by the same organization made recommendations on how to better develop blockchain technology, including the introduction of interoperability and scalability standards. Earlier, in December last year, the same group also made a case for a blockchain-based digital identity system and digital versions of national currencies.

Article Produced By
Adrian Zmudzinski

Adrian is a newswriter based out of Pisa, Italy. He's passionate about cryptocurrency, digital rights, IT, tech and futurology and likes to think about the future in a positive way.



Gibraltar Stock Exchange Launches Listings of Blockchain-Based Securities

Gibraltar Stock Exchange Launches Listings of Blockchain-Based Securities


The Gibraltar Stock Exchange (GSX) is launching listings

of blockchain-powered securities on its practical listing venue GSX Global Market, the firm announced on April 9. Today, the GSX starts listing a number of new products known as digital, smart or tokenized securities such as corporate bonds, convertible bonds, asset-backed securities, derivative securities, open-ended funds and closed-ended funds, the announcement says.

By applying distributed ledger technology (DLT), the GSX intends to enable greater liquidity pools and facilitate democratizing the capital markets, the firm noted in the press release. In contrast to the GSX Main Market, GSX Global Market provides a lighter reporting scheme and disclosure framework, which will purportedly enable issuers with reduced timelines and listing costs. As a recognized stock exchange regulated in the European Economic Area (EEA), GSX Global Market does not require debt issuers with securities listed on the market to withhold tax on coupons under British law, as the press release notes.

The new listings come on the heels of the partnership of an integrated tokenized securities exchange product by GSX Group’s subsidiary Hashtacs and STO Global-X on April 5. The project enables stock exchanges and other qualified financial institutions to tokenize assets and boost the trading, clearing and settling of digital securities. In March 2019, the GSX successfully deployed a GSX Digital Stock Exchange Prototype on the Securities Trading Asset Classification Settlement (STACS) blockchain, and issued a demo bond on its basis. Developed along with Singapore-based blockchain firm Hashstacs, the STACS-enabled project enables listings of digital representations of funds and debts on blockchain.

Article Produced By
Helen Partz

Helen is passionate about learning languages, cultures and the Internet. She has years of experience working at international online advertising projects. Growing interested in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in late 2017, she joined Cointelegraph as a writer.


Coordinator for Largest Group of Mt Gox Creditors Leaves Post Sells His Claim

Coordinator for Largest Group of Mt. Gox Creditors Leaves Post, Sells His Claim


Andy Pag, the founder and coordinator of Mt. Gox Legal (MGL)

— the largest group of creditors of the now-defunct Bitcoin (BTC) exchange Mt. Gox — has quit his post and decided to sell his claim. Pag announced his decision in a letter posted to the MGL contributor forum on April 4. Mt. Gox Legal —  a cooperative of over 1,000 creditors with claims reportedly totaling more than an estimated 125,000BTC (~$649 million at press time) — was formed to seek coordinated legal action to support Mt. Gox’s transition from bankruptcy proceedings to civil rehabilitation (CR).

This transition, which formally took effect in June 2018, should ensure that creditors are reimbursed in crypto, rather than in fiat currency equivalent to the value of their BTC holdings at the time of the exchange’s collapse. As previously reported, Mt. Gox was notoriously hacked in 2011, with around 24,000 creditors reported to be affected. The subsequent collapse of the exchange in early 2014 led to loss of a reported 850,000 BTC, valued at roughly $460 million at the time (~$4.2 billion at press time). Pag, who will leave his role as MGL coordinator at the end of April, also revealed his decision to sell his claim for an instant payout from a buyer offering $600 p/BTC, with a ~33% return in a year. While offering to put fellow MGL creditors in touch with the buyer, he emphasized it was a highly personal decision.

In his letter of resignation to MGL members, Pag cited his belief that reimbursement is likely to take a further 18-24 months or longer, despite recent indications from Mt. Gox’s CR trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi that decisions over creditors’ claims had been concluded in March. Pag gave several major reasons for this belief, foremost that prospective reimbursement and distribution of assets is likely to stall for a significant period of time as Japan’s judiciary assesses an outstanding $16 billion claim from CoinLab, which was allegedly filed in February.

As Cointelegraph has previously reported, in 2013, CoinLab — a former business partner of the exchange —  originally sued Mt. Gox with a bankruptcy claim of $75 million, claiming breach of contract. The figure has since risen to $16 billion amid the civil rehabilitation proceedings. In his letter, Pag said that his recent meeting with Kobayashi confirmed his fears that the trustee would delay filing a civil rehabilitation plan “until the Coinlab case is settled, and that means not just assessment, but through however many rounds of litigation they take it to.”

Pag further gave reasons for his distrust of Mt. Gox ex-CEO Mark Karpeles’ conduct in the CR proceedings, which he “suspects will be the source of more costs and delays.” As reported, a Japanese court recently served Mark Karpeles a suspended jail sentence after he was found guilty of tampering with financial records. He was, however, acquitted of embezzlement. A  separate so-dubbed “GoxRising” movement, is being spearheaded by controversial crypto figure Brock Pierce, who has claimed he can reboot the trading platform and accelerate compensation for creditors.

Article Produced By
Marie Huillet

Marie Huillet is an independent filmmaker, with a background in journalism and publishing. Nomadic by nature, she’s lived in five different countries this decade. She’s fascinated by Blockchain technologies’ potential to reshape all aspects of our lives.