Court documents filed by Facebook yesterday finally reveal the "smoking-gun evidence" the company claimed it has against Paul Ceglia, the upstate New York wood pellet salesmen who claims Mark Zuckerberg once signed away half of his ownership of the social network to him. Facebook says it found the "authentic contract" at the center of Ceglia's suit. The contract attached to the court papers includes the signatures of Zuckerberg and Ceglia but has no mention of Facebook at all, only Streetfax, a startup Ceglia was trying to establish with Zuckerberg's help. “The court-ordered forensic testing has uncovered the authentic contract between Mark Zuckerberg and StreetFax that Ceglia attempted to conceal,” Facebook stated in its filing. “This smoking-gun evidence confirms what defendants have said all along: the purported contract attached to the complaint is an outright fabrication.” As we've noted before, if Facebook is able to prove the contract Ceglia submitted was fake, Ceglia risks charges of criminal fraud. According to Bloomberg, Facebook says they also have evidence that Ceglia concealed "six removable storage devices containing documents with names that include 'Zuckerberg Contract page1.tif' and folder named 'Facebook Files.' In the company's filing, it states “It is very likely that Ceglia used these removable devices to manipulate and store documents, including the purported ‘Facebook contract,’ in the belief that this evidence would not be discovered -- or that the devices could easily be discarded if necessary, as Ceglia has now apparently done.”
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.