Tornado Cash Developer's Appeal Request Denied

Alexey Pertsev, the developer of Tornado Cash, tried to appeal following his first conviction. The request was rejected by the judges in charge of the case. As a result, he will have to stay in prison for at least two additional months, i.e. until the end of November 2022. To this sentence is added the risk that all of his property will be seized. and an auction. The developer was arrested in August by Dutch authorities for involvement in money laundering.

The sequence of events

Alexey Pertsev is a Russian-born developer. Following his arrest in Amsterdam on August 10, 2022, he has been in detention for more than seven weeks. His arrest came two days after the US government added Tornado Cash and 44 associated Ethereum and USDC wallets to its list of specially designated nationals, called the Specially Designated Nationals list (SDN).

This is a list of people and companies owned or controlled by, or acting for or on behalf of, targeted countries. This list includes individuals, groups and entities, such as terrorists and drug traffickers. These natural or legal persons designated under programs that are not specific to certain countries. The government organizes the freezing of their assets and it is generally American nationals no longer have the right to deal with them.

He is accused of having prevented the control of financial transactions. Thus, he allegedly laundered funds for malicious cyber actors through cryptocurrencies. The defense considers the dismissal of the appeal motion to be unjust. Indeed, his lawyer considers that the decision is not based on legal reasoning.

A potential seizure and auction of goods

Dutch prosecutors are reportedly planning to seize and auction Alexey Pertsev’s property. Among these assets, the day of his arrest, the developer’s personal car was seized by the competent authorities. Dutch prosecutors would have the power to seize the property of an arrested person without formally charging him.

Several crypto industry players have condemned Pertsev’s arrest. Last month, a group of around 50 people protested in Amsterdam. The protesters argued that Pertsev should not be held responsible for writing open-source code, regardless of how it is used by bad actors.

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