Pertsev was arrested in August 2022 for being involved in Tornado Cash's development.
Tornado Cash is an open-source decentralised cryptocurrency privacy platform.
Tornado Cash developer faces further charges
Tornado Cash was sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury in August 2022 after it was reported that the protocol was being used to launder billions of dollars in crypto funds and to cover the tracks of North Korean crypto hackers.
On November 22, Dutch prosecutors charged Alexey Pertsev with money laundering charges for helping malicious crypto hackers escape charges by using the Tornado Cash platform to hide their funds.
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Sources claim that prosecutors compared Tornado Cash to PepperSec and insisted that Pertsev knew what Tornado Cash was being used for behind the scenes. PepperSec is a crypto security company made up of Whitehat hackers that help test and fortify blockchain protocols. Pertsev is a former employee of PepperSec.
Keith Cheng, Alexey Pertsev’s lawyer, was disappointed by the outcome in the courtroom. From CoinDesk:
It's clear to us that these judges are not as familiar with the subject matter as they should be.
At the moment, the case law regarding criminal activities is all about bitcoin mixers … It's very important that the court understands that Tornado Cash is something different.
Crypto Twitter has expressed its support for Persev and strongly opposes the acts of prosecutors in Europe and the United States.
Edward Snowden referenced Alexey Pertsev’s case in a tweet. Snowden condemned the White House for sanctioning the creators of privacy tools that can be used to protect everybody.
Dutch prosecutor Martine Boerlage believes Tornado Cash is a “clear-cut money-laundering" case:
If you peel everything off, what we have here is a fairly clear-cut money-laundering case.
That's exactly what a mixing service like Tornado Cash does for you.
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