The Bitcoin Cash hard fork had major ripple effects in the industry in November last year. Headlines all over crypto media captured the event, resulting in two separate blockchains at the time. Originally named Bitcoin Cash ABC and Bitcoin Cash SV, the new crypto assets eventually became Bitcoin SV (BSV) and the new Bitcoin Cash (BCH).
The two sides had clear allies in the crypto industry. The ABC team was led predominantly by Roger Ver and Jihan Wu (Bitmain). The SV fork was led by Craig Wright (nChain) and Calvin Ayre. Following the fork, UnitedCorp chose to sue Ver and Wu, saying that the campaign for the ABC chain, which includes the Kraken exchange, had defied multiple rules and regulation for personal benefit.
The lawsuit specifically states that this group of proponents had participated in “unfair methods of competition,” explaining that they had engaged in “unfair practices” that negatively impacted multiple Bitcoin Cash stakeholders, including themselves. One such action named in court filings is the use of the Over ASICBoost, which provided support for the Bitcoin ABC chain.
Soon after, the accused parties refuted the lawsuit, saying that UnitedCorp had no evidence and their claims were untrue. In response, UnitedCorp submitted a new filing, this time for the opposition of dismissal of the lawsuit, saying that the defendants should have to provide an explanation for their actions under oath and that they planned to subpoena the defendants for the pursuance of discovery.
This is the first time an antitrust action has been filed in the United States involving the crypto industry as a whole. The new release on this development said that the Consolidated Opposition to Defendants Motion to Dismiss Complaint was filed by their counsel, which is Akerman LLP. The case includes the aforementioned individuals, Kraken, Bitmain Group, Bitcoin.com, Amaury Sechet, Shammah Chancellor, and Jason Cox, and was filed after dismissal motioned were submitted on February 1st.
The filing from UnitedCorp includes that the actions taken by these defendants are evidence of violating the current protocols that have been established for Bitcoin “since its inception.” In the press release, the company brings attention to the original Bitcoin whitepaper, which says that the noes have the ability to leave and rejoin the network at any time, though they are required to accept the proof-of-work chain as confirmation of the actions taken in their absence. The press release states that the use of CPU power outside of the network before the update prevented itself from “rejoining,” since it was never a part of the original blockchain. Therefore, the increased CPU power usage could only have been reached with “deliberate and coordinated manipulation” of the accused.
UnitedCorp also alleges that the defendants violated US antitrust laws, specifically naming the Sherman Act. As there are several defendants that live outside of the United States, not all involved parties have been notified of the opposition filing yet.
To view the full press release on this development, visit https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/03/20/1757891/0/en/UnitedCorp-Files-Opposition-to-Dismiss-in-its-Suit-Alleging-Hijacking-of-the-Bitcoin-Cash-Network-by-Bitmain-Group-Bitcoin-com-Roger-Ver-Jesse-Powell-Kraken-and-Bitcoin-ABC-Develop.html.