The Winklevoss twins love to sue people, largely as it’s how they rose to infamy. Back in 2004, the “crypto twins” sued Mark Zuckerberg for allegedly stealing the idea of Facebook from them – a case they successfully won. However, the twins need to start looking for a new lawyer, as in a recent case the courts sided with Charlie Shrem, awarding him $45,000 in legal fees.
The Winklevoss twins were suing Shrem for the loss of a $1.5 million investment into his firm – BitInstant – and the alleged loss of more than 5,000 Bitcoin. If the crypto twins won the court case, Shrem would have been forced to pay out a huge sum of cash.
Winklevoss Twins Triggered by a Spending Spree
The Winklevoss twins had presumed the Bitcoin they hired Shrem to amass for them was simply missing and lost forever. Yet, a couple of years ago Shrem decided to buy himself a $2 million house, power boat, luxury car, and a large amount of land. This triggered the twins into action, believing this was Shrem spending their “missing Bitcoin” and the hired lawyers to take Shrem down for every penny he had.
Shrem Overwhelmingly Ahead
The court debacle is far from over, but for the judge to award Shrem’s legal expenses be paid by the twins is a huge indicator of how the final session will go. Under rule 6212(e) of the New York Civil Practice Law and Rules, the Winklevoss twins have been forced to pay out $44,986.80 in attorney fees and costs equalling a total of $1,053. For the judge to grant Shrem this motion hints that after both oral testimonies and physical evidence Shrem looks like he is an innocent man. The next hearing is set for June 2019, and we could see a verdict ruling not guilty in favor of Shrem and the twins be forced to pay damages to him as a result.
Is Gemini Struggling?
It’s no secret that the crypto winter has taken its toll on a number of large crypto exchanges, but could Gemini be facing financial troubles? The missing 5,000 BTC ($18 million at time of press) could provide the exchange with financing for a number of months and allow the twins to weather this harsh crypto winter. The pair are well known for taking the long route when it comes to launching products, ensuring every move they make is approved by regulators and patented. While this is sensible in the long term, it will cost a lot in the short term to get a product to market, meaning the twins have to endure long spells of losses before they record a profit.
Currently, Gemini is the 72nd largest crypto exchange in the world by 24-hour trade volume with a volume of $6,389,617. To put that into perspective, Binance is currently enjoying a 24-hour trade volume of $613.963,971 – a whopping 9508.77% higher than Gemini. This could bring up a scenario where Gemini is struggling to keep the pace and remain on track during the crypto winter. With this court battle turning sour, we might see the twins scale back their operations.
The court battle with Shrem has definitely put a dent in the crypto twins’ pride and stature. While the battle in the courtroom still has a way to go, it looks very much like Shrem is on top and will walk away with a healthy-looking damages payment.