Crypto Started With Grand Dreams, Then Backroom Deals. Now It's Mired in Lawsuits

In the Media
1 min read

In WIRED, White & Case partner and Chair of the Firm's Global Intellectual Property practice group, Yar Chaikovsky, is quoted extensively on cryptocurrency pioneer Joel Dietz's case against his former collaborators on MetaMask, an Etherum-based crypto-wallet in the form of a web browser extension.

The suit alleges that Dietz's former collaborator Aaron Davis, his new partner Dan Finlay and Consensys CEO Joe Lubin swindled him out of an ownership stake in MetaMask, as Davis stopped communicating with Dietz but quietly continued to work on the project with Finlay. Dietz alleges that at some unknown date, they either sold or transferred ownership of the company, and have taken steps to erase Dietz's involvement in the project from the public record in the period since.

In WIRED, Chaikovsky notes that the case will come down to two questions. "The first: Was a partnership ever established between Dietz and Davis? The second: By what date should Dietz have realized his ownership interest in MetaMask had been taken from him, if that's what occurred?"

"Despite what appears to be evidence of a partnership," says Chaikovsky, "there is an opening for the defense to contest the idea that Dietz was unaware of wrongdoing until six years after the alleged theft. The date is relevant because it will determine when the statute of limitations kicks in."

"This is ultimately going to be a dispute about when the clock starts ticking," says Chaikovsky. "The statute of limitations is there to ensure parties don't wait until something succeeds to file suit. You file a suit when you have a problem, not when you have a valuable problem."

See the full WIRED article here.

Press contact
For more information please speak to your local media contact.