A New Yorker who designed the original website for Mark Zuckerberg that eventually grew into Facebook has claimed that he owns 84 per cent of the company.
Facebook is fighting Paul Ceglia's claims in court, overturning a New York judge's recent order to temporarily block any transfer of the company's assets.
Web designer Ceglia said he signed a contract with Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg back in 2003 to design a site, for which he was paid a $1,000 fee and a 50 per cent stake in the company, originally launched as thefacebook.com.
That contract also said Ceglia "would acquire an additional 1 per cent interest in the business, per day, until the website was completed."
Ceglia is now claiming that by February 4, 2004, his stake in Facebook was 84 per cent. For its part, Facebook has said the lawsuit is 'completely frivolous'.
Reuters notes in December 2009, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo obtained a temporary restraining order against a wood-pellet fuel company owned by Ceglia, following allegations that Allegany Pellets took $200,000 from customers without delivering anything in return or giving them refunds.
Stay tuned for updates on Ceglia vs. Zuckerberg & Facebook as and when we get them.