Affaire Tornado cash : La confidentialité en danger ?

In early August, the US Treasury imposed heavy penalties on the crypto mixer, Tornado Cash. The US Department, through the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), believes that Tornado Cash facilitates money laundering. Hence the penalties. Since then, a good part of the players in the crypto value chain have protested against this decision. Some like Binance are funding a legal action by the mixer against the authorities. Not a day goes by without the company receiving support. The latest is Coin Center, a Washington DC-based organization that champions the interests of crypto businesses.

Is the decision to sanction Tornado Cash illegal?

The advocacy group Coin Center has just filed a lawsuit against the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). This action has its origins in the unilateral decision of the Treasury agency to sanction the crypto mixer Tornado Cash. The announcement of this lawsuit was made by Jerry Brito, the executive director of the lobbying group. “If onot allows this precedent, OFAC will be able to add entire protocols like Bitcoin or Ethereum to the list of entities to be sanctioned in the future, banning them just as easily without any public process. This arguably poses an existential threat to virtually every protocol in the industry. »he wrote on Twitter.

Jerry Brito announces Coin Center’s complaint against the US Treasury.

For information, David Hoffman, co-host of Bankless, Patrick O’Sullivan, former user of Tornado Cash, and the anonymous operator of the 688th Support Brigade are also plaintiffs, alongside Coin Center. Consovoy McCarthy and attorney Abraham Sutherland will represent the plaintiff.

Coin Center’s complaint seeks, among other things, to challenge OFAC’s authority to sanction Tornado Cash. Lobbyists say the Treasury exceeded its statutory authority in issuing the sanction. This, while the regulations of the department limit its capacity to sanction a protocol. They also accuse the Treasury of not having taken into account the consequences of the sanction, in accordance with what is prescribed in the regulations.

Coin Center hopes that the judgment handed down in this case will result in case law that limits the Treasury in its attempt to thwart the efforts of the crypto industry. In a note published on its site, the group indicates: “When we win our case, the use of Tornado Cash will return to normal”.

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