Crypto community outraged as court jails Tornado Cash developer for over five years

Crypto community outraged as court jails Tornado Cash developer for over five years

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A Dutch court has sentenced Alexey Pertsev, a developer involved with Tornado Cash, to 64 months in prison.

He was convicted of laundering $1.2 billion in crypto through the Tornado Cash mixer between July 9, 2019, and August 10, 2022.

Pertsev’s legal team has a 14-day window to appeal the court’s decision.

This verdict follows Pertsev’s arrest by Dutch authorities nearly two years ago, in August 2022. At that time, the US government had sanctioned the crypto mixing tool for aiding entities like North Korea-backed Lazarus Group in laundering their illegal proceeds.

The ruling in Pertsev’s case could have significant implications for the crypto sector, particularly as other Tornado Cash developers face trials in the United States. In August 2023, the Department of Justice (DOJ) brought charges against Tornado Cash co-founder Roman Storm, alleging money laundering and violations of US sanctions laws.

Crypto community reacts

Pertsev’s conviction has riled up members of the crypto community, who are criticizing the judgment.

Pablito, the head of security research at Blockfence, said the ruling was a “sad day for privacy, crypto and open-source.” He added that “the war is not over. Privacy is a human right.”

Meanwhile, Alexandre Stachtchenko, a web3 expert, said:

“This has gone too far. It is time to end this KYC and surveillance mess before it eats democracy itself. I will soon publish a text calling for action and support.”

Similarly, Michelle Weekley, the director of product development at Byte Federal, opined that the ruling showed crypto users either “participate in AML/KYC regulation or go to jail.” She added:

“This is the real fight and we either take down the global banking regulation cartel or we just apply all their laws to the new ecosystem and continue to live under their tyrannical dictatorship.”

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