Tornado Cash Trial Fundraiser Bags $350k and Snowden Support

Web3 community, including NSA whistleblower Snowden, rallied to support Tornado Cash by helping raise funds for its trial.

Tornado cash asking for cash.
Created by Kornelija Poderskytė from DailyCoin
  • Tornado Cash co-founders are raising funds for legal fees against the US government. 
  • The crypto mixing tool developers have already raised $350,000 as they prepare for trial this year. 
  • Former NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden urged his followers to support the Tornado Cash trial. 

Tornado Cash has garnered widespread attention as it gears up for a precedent-setting trial in the United States this year, facing a mountain of charges of money laundering and sanctions violations. 

In the wake of these legal challenges, Tornado Cash co-founders are now turning to the public, looking for support as they face the consequences of creating a tool ridden with scammers and hackers. 

Web3 Community Comes to Tornado Cash’s Aid

Crypto mixing tool Tornado Cash’s eponymous co-founders, Storm and Pertsev, are preparing for an impending trial on a multitude of charges slated for March and September this year. In hopes of raising funds for legal representation against the US Department of Justice (DOJ), the developers launched a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) on Monday, January 22.

In a compelling appeal to the community, Storm shed light on the gravity of their situation, urging supporters to rally behind them, emphasizing the potential implications of their trial, not just for the web3 sector but also for the broader landscape of privacy rights.

Storm’s plea made rounds on social platforms, amassing millions of views and generating an impressive $350,000 in funds for their legal defense. Former NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden also endorsed the cause, underscoring the importance of privacy with the statement, “Privacy is not a crime.”

The DOJ’s allegations against the Tornado Cash co-founders carry significant weight as the US government looks to use this trial as a precedent for the entire industry.

Tornado Cash’s Serious Allegations

In August 2023, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) arrested Tornado Cash co-founder Storm, alongside his alleged co-conspirator Roman Semenov, on charges of money laundering and sanctions violations. 

The DOJ alleges that over $1 billion in cryptocurrency was illicitly funneled through Tornado Cash. The accusations come at the heels of the crypto mixing platform’s notoriety among hackers and scammers looking to mask their wallet addresses, particularly North Korean hacking collective Lazarus Group

According to the US government, Lazarus Group leveraged Tornado Cash to launder half a billion dollars, further alleging that the stolen funds were directed towards funding North Korea’s nuclear missile programs and other state initiatives.  

Storm, released on a $2 million bond, has pleaded not guilty to the charges levied against him,  vehemently refuting these allegations, emphasizing a potential misunderstanding in the legal proceedings.

On the Flipside

  • Stablecoin issuer Tether recently deployed a new wallet-freezing policy that allows the US government to target and freeze wallets linked to sanctioned entities.
  • The US, South Korea, and Japan recently collaboratively stepped up their efforts to counter North Korea’s growing threat to the region, specifically targeting threats such as crypto money laundering. 

Why This Matters

The Tornado Cash trial could seriously impact how we see and use privacy tools in Web3 and beyond. While it was designed to provide privacy, the trial is challenging because the tool has gained a reputation for aiding scammers and hackers. It raises important questions about finding a balance between privacy rights and preventing the misuse of these tools for illegal activities, setting a precedent for similar technologies in the open-source world.

Read more on Tornado Cash’s Trial:
Why Tornado Cash’s Trial Is Important as It Seeks Donations

Read more about Cardano’s recovery:
Cardano (ADA) Makes Steady 10% Recovery Over the Weekend

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Author
Insha Zia

Insha Zia is a senior journalist at DailyCoin covering crypto developments, especially in the Cardano ecosystem. With a Bachelor of Science in Computer Systems Engineering, he delivers high-quality articles with his technical background and expertise in data analysis and programming languages, aiming to educate and inform readers accurately, transparently, and engagingly. Insha believes education can drive mass adoption of the crypto space, and he is committed to giving DailyCoin readers a better understanding of the technology.