Bitcoin founder coincidentally emerges on the same day exchange CEO dies

  • AFP, Washington
  • |
  • Updated: Mar 30, 2014 11:25 IST

Newsweek on Thursday said it had found the enigmatic creator of the online currency bitcoin, a reclusive Japanese-American physicist and model train fan whose name is actually Satoshi Nakamoto.

Newsweek comes out with this news ironically on a day when a 28-year-old American boss of a Bitcoin exchange has been found dead at the base of a Singapore apartment block.

Singapore police said they were investigating the "unnatural" death of Autumn Radtke, chief executive of Singapore-based First Meta, on February 26, but that no foul play was suspected.

After years of speculation that the name was a pseudonym for another person or a collective, a Newsweek reporter said 64-year-old Dorian S Nakamoto, who lives in a modest two-story home in suburban Los Angeles, is the creator of the crypto-currency that has rocked the banking world.

Nakamoto did not admit to being behind the online phenomenon that, since its launch five years ago, has sparked enthusiasm as a financial revolution and scandals over its use to trade drugs and launder money.

And he called the police when the magazine's reporter knocked on his door.

But the magazine said the man, whose quiet career often involved classified work as a systems engineer for the US government and private companies, tacitly acknowledged his role.

"I am no longer involved in that, and I cannot discuss it," he said. "It's been turned over to other people." In a scoop that heralds the relaunch of its print edition on Friday after two years only online, Newsweek said Nakamoto was born in Japan in 1949 and immigrated to the United States 10 years later.

He studied physics at California State Polytechnic University and worked for a number of different companies, but has apparently not had a steady job since 2002.

He spends much of his time on his model train hobby -- and has apparently not tapped the millions of dollars of bitcoin wealth Newsweek says comes from authoring the computer code behind it.

 

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