Tornado Cash Developer Filed an Appeal After His Conviction

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Alexey Pertsev, a prominent developer behind Tornado Cash, has filed an appeal with the Court of Appeal s-Hertogenbosch against his recent guilty verdict. As per a spokesperson for the court, the hearing could take a couple of months before it occurs. Meanwhile, the court has not said anything regarding the approval of the appeal.

As the appeal process unfolds, the outcome will be closely monitored, not only for its impact on Pertsev’s future but for its broader implications on the development and regulation of blockchain technologies.

Alexey Pertsev Sentenced for Money Laundering

Some days ago, the 31-year-old Pertsev was convicted of money laundering and sentenced to 64 months in prison by a Dutch Judge at s-Hertogenbosch court. As per the report, he will remain in jail until a suitable correctional facility in the Netherlands is located for his offense.

Recall that Pertsev was arrested in 2022 after Tornado Cash was indicted for its involvement in laundering $7 billion worth of funds obtained from illicit activities. The US Office and Foreign Assets Control added Tornado Cash and 44 other associated Ethereum (ETH) and USDC wallets to its sanction list. Amongst the listed wallets are the smart contracts that run Tornado Cash and the Tornado Cash donation wallet.

Tornado Cash Co-Founders Under Scrutiny

In a separate development,  Roman Semenov, one of the co-founders of the Tornado Cash cryptocurrency mixer was added to the United States Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (OFAC) database of Specially Designated Nationals on August 2023. Also, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation division detained another co-founder Roman Storm on the same day in Washington state.

Semenov and Storm have been charged for engaging in laundering money, participating in sanctions violations, and attempting to operate an unregistered financial-transmitting company. However, Roman Storm on the other hand was granted bail and released soon after being detained by the US DOJ. Storm lawyers in a filing argued that the prosecutor’s attempt to criminalize developing software is unprecedented and violates his First Amendment rights.

Crypto Advocacy Groups Rally Behind Tornado Cash Developer

At the beginning of last month, three prominent crypto advocacy groups filed amicus briefs to defend Roman Storm. Storm’s defense has been bolstered by amicus briefs filed by Coin Center, the Blockchain Association, and the DeFi Education Fund, all challenging the government’s interpretation of the case.

Responding to the charges, Storm’s legal team has motioned to drop them. They argue that the government’s characterization of Tornado Cash and blockchain technology is “fatally flawed.”

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