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Author Topic: Mt.Gox Multi-plaintiff Suit  (Read 53936 times)
nmersulypnem
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February 20, 2014, 11:04:12 AM
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I have contacted the offices of my law firm (REDACTED) in Tokyo to begin proceedings to sue Mt.Gox / Tibanne Ltd / Mark Karpeles for my USD funds.  He advised me that suing for USD is much more reliable than suing for BTC (since the price varies and bankruptcy collection on BTC has an unclear legal process).  Given the liquidations we see on MtGox we believe that there are likely other large plaintiffs filing suit, so we want to move quickly.

If you are interested in being co-plaintiffs in this suit, please PM me (I'm happy to split legal costs), and I will put you in touch with the partner I am dealing with.  Note that you will need to provide full proof of identification as well as proof of account ownership on Gox (to be provided to the law firm, not myself).

In general, a class action type suit is most likely to get us "smaller" holders a larger percentage of our funds than if we filed separate law suits.

If it happens that Mt.Gox enters into bankruptcy (likely as a result of a preceding lawsuit), the firm is experienced in bankruptcy negotiations/law to maximize our tier on collections.  Hopefully we can collect before that because Japanese bankruptcy law is neither well defined nor quick.

We are looking to finish collecting plaintiffs by EOD Friday JST, and file a case as early as we can get the paperwork together next week.

EDIT:  I've received a HUGE number of PMs, so it's going to take time for me to get back to everyone.   I stated above that we want to get everyone in by tomorrow, but given the number of people and the amount of money some of you have noted, I think it will take through the weekend to get it all straight.  My attorney in Tokyo is obviously asleep now, but here are the points I will clarify with him tomorrow...

1. What exactly are the terms of suing for any existing BTC holdings?  *My understanding when speaking with him is that he was not interested in suing for BTC for a few reasons - a. Any collection of actual BTC (ie property) is a different collection process at judgment time.  b. That BTC may not exist and you may not be able to sue other assets at value if you are suing for property.  c. The valuation of BTC would be at the time of judgment - not the price on eg. BitStamp pre MtGox announcement nor on filing day.  From his description of qualified plaintiffs, I strongly suspect that he wants people suing for USD entirely (...and he's probably looking out for his commission as well, TBH).   In any case, I will clarify with him tomorrow.  Maybe we can make it people with (at least) 10K USD, and also whatever BTC - but I am not optimistic.*

2. What are the fees?  *I've worked with the firm in the past and they charge ~10% on judgment collection (contingency).  There are usually also some non-contingent fees paid up front, but given that we have a number of plaintiffs seemingly ready to go with significant holdings I may be able to get him to waive non-contingent (up-front) fees.  In any case, they would amount to much less than the 10% even if we do pay it.*

3. What exact evidence of identity and ownership do you need to begin?  *I'm guessing this will entail a scan of your ID and a screenshot of your account, and some forms to fill out / sign / fax or scan, but you may need something notarized, so hold off on that until he responds.*

4. Is there any limit on the number of plaintiffs you will represent?  *He did not indicate there was, but I gave him an estimate much lower than the responses I've received.*

**Also, please PM me with your email address so the attorney can email everyone directly when it's all decided.**

Anything else I'm forgetting?

**UPDATE**
Everyone, thank you so much for getting in touch with me.  I am sorry I wasn't able to accommodate many of you.   I wasn't able to add as many people as I had initially hoped (since it's not a real class action), and the lawyer was quite strict about suing for cash amounts.  Some of you had very heartfelt stories - thank you for sharing that, honestly, and I intend on responding to everyone who messaged me individually.  

For those who I've PM'd with details, please submit the documents this weekend (per the email you should get).  For everyone else - I really wish you guys the best of luck.  There are plenty of lawyers in Tokyo that speak english (check the big international law firms).  Any firm that size will have litigation specialists, and that's all you really need.

Best of luck.
PS.  To the press who have contact me - thank you for your PMs, but I was specifically instructed NOT to discuss this with the press.
PPS.  I changed the title to correct that this is not technically a "class action" suit.


***FINAL UPDATE***

I'm sure that everyone is aware that MtGox declared bankruptcy yesterday.  As such, our lawsuit is off and we, like everyone, will be filing a claim in bankruptcy court.  Words cannot express my (our) disappointment in this whole debacle.  Over the last week I have spoken to people from all around the world, many of whom are now facing financial catastrophe - and it is heartbreaking.  It is especially disheartening given the noble endeavor we had set out to achieve.  To create a financial system based on open source principals that would level the playing field for people around the world and liberate them from the various corrupt central banks sabotaging their success and financial freedom.  Yet here we are, betrayed by a trust system similar to what we sought to avoid.  Ultimately, I still believe in cryptocurrency technology and how it will revolutionize the financial world; but it is clear that still has a lot of growing up to do - both the protocol and the service ecosystem.  As a testament to the REAL PEOPLE who've been left in the wake of this lesson, I'd like to share with you a small sample of the personal messages I received (personal information removed).



______________________________________________________________________________

Hello,

I am in Japan and have deposited 12.499 million Yen (about USD 122,000) at MtGox from October to December 2013. I currently have 175 BTCs and 13,000 Yen in cash at their exchange. I also have a Premium status account.

Please let me know how to proceed.
That was most of my retirement money.

______________________________________________________________________________

Hi.

My name is xxx and I live in Sweden, Malmö.
I am writing for me and for my girlfriend and my dad.
We all bought and sold bitcoins a last years and made some money.
We have taken out some money when we need to and right now me and my girlfriend was going to buy a house and start a family so we tried to withdraw the money in January.
Since the money didn't show up after 4 weeks I tried to contact them but still nothing.
I hope that together with you and some others get at least some money back.
If you need any proof of the withdrawals or such I can provide some of it.
We had in total $49000 on the accounts.

Hope to hear from you regarding this, since we are unsure how to proceed.

______________________________________________________________________________

Help!

I have about 90 BTC and no USD in my mtgox account, which I would very much like to receive back at some point. It's only just sinking in that it might all be gone.. I can't believe I waited so long before getting it out somewhere safe, but.. here we are.

______________________________________________________________________________

Hey there,
I am interested in being a plaintiff as well.  I had about 70k in Mtgox in Dec due to the price explosion in November and attempted to withdraw some funds since I wasn't comfortable having that amount hosted there.  I ran into the withdrawal issue back in Dec and opened a support ticket in which I got the run around until they finally officially announced what the problem was.  As the moment, I don't have any $$ in Mtgox but around 180 BTC.  My stomach has been in knots all week :-(

______________________________________________________________________________

Hello,

at the time that the withdrawal stopped I have over $3MM in fiat at Gox.  I now have ~5,400 BTC there.  It maybe sizeable enough for your attorneys to consider taking on a BTC claim?  In any case, if they think that I can sue based on my fiat balance prior to withdrawal suspension, based on the idea that any subsequent trading was essentially fraudulent, well then I would be interested in join the effort.

______________________________________________________________________________

Hi,

My name is xxxxxx and I am from California (if that matters).  I have about 650 BTC in Gox.  I haven't slept in days and haven't been able to tell my wife how much I've lost.  I was an early adopter, just mining in my basement, and I can't imagine all of my time and work vanishing like this.  Please contact me with what I need to do

______________________________________________________________________________

I am a French citizen.  I would like to know how to try and join you in reclaiming my lost funds.  I had almost 100.000 EUR in my account.  It will be a complete disaster for me if it is stolen.

______________________________________________________________________________

I cannot reasonably afford to lose the funds I have at Mtgox. I currently hold the majority in USD, but also significant amounts of EUR and BTC.

______________________________________________________________________________

I would like to join your action lawsui as co-paintiff. I try to keep this short since you are probably getting tons of PMs.

I'm resident of Germany and I'm waiting for ~5700 Euros (~7800 US$) to be withdrawn by MTGOX. I also have about 9 BTCs on my account there. I successfully received a MTGOX-withdrawal of 990 EUR on 2013/12/30, which was ordered on 2013/12/03.

I'm a student and this is almost all of my money I have left (I actually have a lot of debt, which I intended to pay back with that money). I'm really panicking right now and not sure what to do!!!

______________________________________________________________________________

I'm in Tokyo as well and I lost ~8 BTC and 500,000 in JPY. Please let me know how your case progresses and whether at any time you think it would be possible to get others involved. I really hope I can get at least some of that money back. I need it.

______________________________________________________________________________

I am very interested in your proposal of suing Mt.Gox to get what is ours.

I would need to sue for more than 70000EUR or over 90000USD. The ammount depends of the bitcoin price - not the manipulated Mt.Gox price, but like the Bitcoin price index on coinbase.com.
Although it would be best if Mt.Gox let me simply withdraw my more than 170BTC.

So many people are angry about Mt.Gox and me too. They act like scamers.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have CSV's, screenshots + multiple records everything for owning 994.90514041 BTC through my mtgox accounts.

I have ZERO fiat located in mtgox.

______________________________________________________________________________

Hi, I had 100BTC but a friend had $14000 USD on Gox. Can you put me into contact with whomever is organising the class action lawsuit?

______________________________________________________________________________

I had some 125BTC & $1000 on MtGox. I'd prefer to recover the BTC but if not possible, USD is better than nothing. Technically at the last price the total is well above the $10000 limit. Can you count me in? What should I do next?

______________________________________________________________________________

Hey, I'd like to get involved in this as well. Gox has yet to deliver a withdrawal of funds from late last year and currently has all my coins locked up because of their withdrawal lock. Email is below, let me know if you need any other info. Thanks,

______________________________________________________________________________

(originally I tried to withdraw $30,000.00, but Mt.Gox cancelled my withdraw and asked me to change to GBP. Funds never arrived--> Mt.Gox confirmed they were unable to wire funds, but funds are not re-instated to my account. Mt.Gox admits in the e-mail funds are mine.)

______________________________________________________________________________

I'm interested in joining as a co-P in Japan, I have $200k+ in cash balance (no bitcoins) locked up on their site right now. Let me know how many other co-Ps will be represented and the estimated legal costs. Do we have an update on the status of Mt Gox? They haven't filed for bankruptcy just yet. I'm a verified member so I'm thinking they might resume operations and just send us a check, but I'm interested in others' opinions on that.

______________________________________________________________________________

I found your post just today after the Gox closed the site. I had 10,200 USD with them, which I traded just last week for gox coin. I initially deposited USD from bank account on November 2013, and traded on Gox just about 2 weeks ago, not knowing there was a trouble to withdraw any BTC from them. I do have screen shots from last week from trading and all my history since November 2013. My initial deposits in November have been 8000 USD and 2200 USD, so whatever trading I did in last weeks was for vain since gox did not let any BTC out of the site. Current standing on my account is about 27 BTC and around 2200 USD but since gox coin was never a real BTC, as I just learnt recently, I consider Gox owing me 10200 USD which I initially deposited.

______________________________________________________________________________

I wish to be include in the class action lawsuit, I an non-us (EU) and have lost 50 BTC and 24,600€.

Please let me know if I can be included.

______________________________________________________________________________

I would like to join the lawsuit.. i lost 112 btc.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have 93BTC at stake in mtgox.
Money used to acquire it was 29k EUR.

I would like to join the lawsuit if there is any chance of getting the either the BTC or EURO-equivalent at the price determined at the time of judgement.

I would be thankful for any news / suggestions / ideas.

Thank you very much

______________________________________________________________________________

I want to participate. I have 85 BTC on Mt Gox.

Please update me and let me know, which further steps I have to take to participate.

______________________________________________________________________________

I had $28500 in, and purchased 50btc @ $570.  So now I have the 49.7btc still in and no fiat.  Have been waiting for withdrawal to resume to clean myself of gox forever.

I was very lucky, having pulled out the bulk of my btc holdings from gox in mid-January.

Please respond if whether I can or can't participate.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have 37 BTCs and wnt to be part of your lawsuit. Please send me more details.

______________________________________________________________________________

i too am a Gox victim.  I have 69 BTC stuck on Gox. At this stage i would be very reluctant to take such a haircut and convert to USD.

Has the lawyer you hired totally ruled out BTC cases? Is he even taking on new cases?

______________________________________________________________________________

My mtgox holdings are only 32.5 btc but i would still like to be part of the law suit.

______________________________________________________________________________

I am close to you're class action suite limit. I had a pending withdraw for $8,000 USD, that they refused to process or refund to my account. I complained so much they blocked my account.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have roughly $100K in my account, so it might be worth it for the lawyer to squeeze me in.

______________________________________________________________________________

hi we are interested to participate also
and we have a company account with them

let me know how to proceed

______________________________________________________________________________

I have 50BTC in MTGOX and would be interested in joining. If yes, how large would the fees be?

______________________________________________________________________________

If Mtgox is indeed gone and finished, I would like to know what the status of this suit is and who I can contact regarding it. I had about 111.777 BTC on gox.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have 158 btc on MtGox and would like to take part to your lawsuit.

______________________________________________________________________________

Most of our holdings were in bitcoin, and at market rates on other exchanges, I had over $40,000 while my friends had $300,000 to 400,000.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have 154 BTC and 0 USD in MTGOX.

I live in Malta but would like to know what my options are for joining your case?

______________________________________________________________________________

Hey. Mt. Gox has owed me roughly 1,800 USD for more than 6 months. Two transactions. One they're claiming technical difficulties to Dwolla which never went through, and one they just never sent to my bank.

______________________________________________________________________________

I'm a very credible trader who pays his American taxes yearly. I feel so stupid for holding the majority of my BTC exposure on mt gox in hindsight......

I have 301 BTC on mt gox and under $10 USD, my account on gox was a verified account as well.

______________________________________________________________________________

I have around 5.5k EUR stuck in Gox. Could you please inform me on how to proceed?

______________________________________________________________________________






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February 20, 2014, 11:07:20 AM
 #2

Now, this is getting interesting
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February 20, 2014, 11:08:51 AM
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About how much money do you talk?
100k ? 1M?

I could use some spare BTC. Lost 131 BTC, thanks to Mt.Gox. Lost 28 BTC with BFL miners. I probably have to sell Virgin Airlines.
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February 20, 2014, 11:11:09 AM
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About how much money do you talk?
100k ? 1M?

The lawyers requested that co-defendants have at least $10000 USD in a Gox account to be listed on the case.
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February 20, 2014, 11:11:51 AM
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About how much money do you talk?
100k ? 1M?

ha ha that shut up that prick!
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February 20, 2014, 11:13:22 AM
 #6

About how much money do you talk?
100k ? 1M?

ha ha that shut up that prick!

?

Sorry to bother you. But filling a lawsuit with co-defendants with only 100$ in a Gox account is pretty STUPID!

I could use some spare BTC. Lost 131 BTC, thanks to Mt.Gox. Lost 28 BTC with BFL miners. I probably have to sell Virgin Airlines.
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February 20, 2014, 11:14:44 AM
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I'm interested.. but I want the BTC not the USD.

I love bitcoins - everything about them.
Visit the Flibbr website - follow on twitter: @flibbr - or say hello on Facebook
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February 20, 2014, 11:17:55 AM
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My understanding is that Japan does not have a legal framework for class actions as yet although it has been discussed in the context of the Fukushima fall out.  Very few legal systems actually have a workable US style class action system in place.  My information may be out of date though, could you explain in any more detail?
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February 20, 2014, 11:20:28 AM
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want the BTC also

 

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February 20, 2014, 11:22:29 AM
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I have contacted the offices of my law firm (Bingham) in Tokyo to begin proceedings to sue Mt.Gox / Tibanne Ltd / Mark Karpeles for my USD funds.  He advised me that suing for USD is much more reliable than suing for BTC (since the price varies and bankruptcy collection on BTC has unclear legal process).  We believe that there are numerous other plaintiffs in the early stages of filing suit and suspect that is why it appears that accounts are liquidating to cash on Mt Gox.

If you are interested in being co-plaintiffs in this suit, please PM me (I'm happy to split legal costs), and I will put you in touch with the partner I am dealing with.  Note that you will need to provide full proof of identification as well as proof of account ownership on Gox (to be provided to Bingham, not myself).

In general, a class action type suit is most likely to get everyone their funds (or fair percentage thereof) than if we all file separate law suits.



TL;DR please sell your coins for USD on gox so i can buy them cheaper?
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February 20, 2014, 11:23:04 AM
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My understanding is that Japan does not have a legal framework for class actions as yet although it has been discussed in the context of the Fukushima fall out.  Very few legal systems actually have a workable US style class action system in place.  My information may be out of date though, could you explain in any more detail?

Correct.  In this case, we'd all be equal co-plaintiffs.  This isn't an American style class action, it's just a regular law suit with a number of co-plaintiffs.  We'd all equally share the attorney costs.
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February 20, 2014, 11:24:27 AM
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About how much money do you talk?
100k ? 1M?

ha ha that shut up that prick!

?

Sorry to bother you. But filling a lawsuit with co-defendants with only 100$ in a Gox account is pretty STUPID!


100 USD is  0.16 BTC. Nobody has the right to steal from you, even 1 cent. Justice should be blind, remember?

If you hate me, you can spam me here: 19wdQNKjnATkgXvpzmSrkSYhJtuJWb8mKs
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February 20, 2014, 11:25:38 AM
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I have contacted the offices of my law firm (Bingham) in Tokyo to begin proceedings to sue Mt.Gox / Tibanne Ltd / Mark Karpeles for my USD funds.  He advised me that suing for USD is much more reliable than suing for BTC (since the price varies and bankruptcy collection on BTC has unclear legal process).  We believe that there are numerous other plaintiffs in the early stages of filing suit and suspect that is why it appears that accounts are liquidating to cash on Mt Gox.

If you are interested in being co-plaintiffs in this suit, please PM me (I'm happy to split legal costs), and I will put you in touch with the partner I am dealing with.  Note that you will need to provide full proof of identification as well as proof of account ownership on Gox (to be provided to Bingham, not myself).

In general, a class action type suit is most likely to get everyone their funds (or fair percentage thereof) than if we all file separate law suits.



TL;DR please sell your coins for USD on gox so i can buy them cheaper?

No, you do not need to sell your coins.  But when it comes time to file the suit, you'll have to list the USD you are suing for - and you can only collect what you declare as your holdings.  The initial filing should be ready be middle of next week.
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February 20, 2014, 11:25:40 AM
 #14

I didn't say stealing is ok.
It's just more effort to fill in your name than 100$ worth in BTC...

Probably you never used your legal system and had to pay for anything  Roll Eyes

I could use some spare BTC. Lost 131 BTC, thanks to Mt.Gox. Lost 28 BTC with BFL miners. I probably have to sell Virgin Airlines.
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February 20, 2014, 11:30:33 AM
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My understanding is that Japan does not have a legal framework for class actions as yet although it has been discussed in the context of the Fukushima fall out.  Very few legal systems actually have a workable US style class action system in place.  My information may be out of date though, could you explain in any more detail?
I think this is the reason why lawyers want to have participiants at least with 10000$. Each one is a single file, there are no class actions possible.

Im interested in this, but just for my BTC, not for the $.
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February 20, 2014, 11:42:35 AM
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interested ---    plz contact me

have plenty in but i coverted to bit coin as I wait  Huh
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February 20, 2014, 11:51:43 AM
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My understanding is that Japan does not have a legal framework for class actions as yet although it has been discussed in the context of the Fukushima fall out.  Very few legal systems actually have a workable US style class action system in place.  My information may be out of date though, could you explain in any more detail?
I think this is the reason why lawyers want to have participiants at least with 10000$. Each one is a single file, there are no class actions possible.

Im interested in this, but just for my BTC, not for the $.


Not exactly, it is still one filing, just with multiple plaintiffs.  The difference is that a US class action suit has specific provisions to manage high numbers of plaintiffs in aggregate (eg that x% of plaintiffs must vote for a settlement, and no suits can be brought outside the class action suit, etc...).  

In Japan, it's much more simple (ie like an individual suit) where the lawyer negotiates a settlement and each participant can accept or exit the suit.  If you don't agree to the settlement, you're free to get another lawyer and try again.

The critical issue here is timing.  I want this suit to progress quickly in case there are other suits that are already at later stages of collection.  I don't want to be the last one holding the bag.
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February 20, 2014, 12:03:17 PM
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It is about time someone sue them, interesting to see how Mt Gox would react. Court or settlement?  Grin

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February 20, 2014, 12:06:58 PM
 #19

It is about time someone sue them, interesting to see how Mt Gox would react. Court or settlement?  Grin

If they have money, I'm sure they'll settle.  In fact, I'm fairly certain big holders have already been suing them and getting their money out on the side.
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February 20, 2014, 12:11:45 PM
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I have contacted the offices of my law firm (Bingham) in Tokyo to begin proceedings to sue Mt.Gox / Tibanne Ltd / Mark Karpeles for my USD funds.  He advised me that suing for USD is much more reliable than suing for BTC (since the price varies and bankruptcy collection on BTC has unclear legal process).  We believe that there are numerous other plaintiffs in the early stages of filing suit and suspect that is why it appears that accounts are liquidating to cash on Mt Gox.

If you are interested in being co-plaintiffs in this suit, please PM me (I'm happy to split legal costs), and I will put you in touch with the partner I am dealing with.  Note that you will need to provide full proof of identification as well as proof of account ownership on Gox (to be provided to Bingham, not myself).

In general, a class action type suit is most likely to get everyone their funds (or fair percentage thereof) than if we all file separate law suits.



TL;DR please sell your coins for USD on gox so i can buy them cheaper?

No, you do not need to sell your coins.  But when it comes time to file the suit, you'll have to list the USD you are suing for - and you can only collect what you declare as your holdings.  The initial filing should be ready be middle of next week.

I'm no legal expert, but if I had BTC on MtGox, I wouldn't sell them and declare the value of the coins at one of the other exchanges like Bitstamp or Coinbase.
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