A Netherlands court has ruled that Tornado Cash developer Alexey Pertsev be denied bail. The inculpated programmer will inevitably spend a further three months in detention before any further rulings.
Netherlands Judge Rules Against Pertsev
29-year-old Alexey Pertsev, one of the developers responsible for the Tornado Cash code, has been denied bail. This comes hot on the heels of his August 10 arrest. Dutch Financial Crimes Agency FIOD had apparently had their eye on Tornado Cash since June. Authorities finally arrested developer Pertsev on August 12 for his alleged involvement in Tornado Cash’s money laundering activities.
Earlier this month, the judge presiding over Pertsev’s case ruled in favor of FIOD, mandating his detention for two weeks. The two-week period elapsed on Wednesday, Aug 24, when the judge then denied Pertsev bail, remanding him for three more months. A public hearing will take place within this 90-day period, although Dutch Authorities have not charged Pertsev with any crimes.
The Tornado Cash Arrest Controversy
Tornado Cash, like all crypto mixers, is a service that allows traders to obscure the original source of their crypto. While this does afford traders some extra anonymity, crypto mixers are notorious for being used for illegal activities.
The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), a U.S governmental body, recently imposed sanctions on Tornado Cash. The sanctions effectively barred all Tornado Cash users from accessing their crypto.
Just two days later, the Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD) arrested Pertsev. The FIOD stated that money laundering using DAOs would be a new area of focus for the body.
Pertsev’s arrest has been met with heavy criticism by the crypto community, sparking both online and physical protests in the Netherlands. The general consensus seems to be that Pertsev cannot be implicated in the use of Tornado Cash for illegitimate business. Especially as the Tornado Cash source code is open-source, and thus free of furtive intents.
Welcome to the war on code
— Cobie (@cobie) August 12, 2022
Scores of angry protesters gathered in Amsterdam’s Dam Square on August 22, decrying Pertsev’s unjust detention. The Dutch Authorities maintain that Tornado Cash’s administrators do little to prevent the use of the service for illegitimate purposes.