Alleged Tornado Cash developer, Alexey Pertsev, was accused of facilitating money laundering through the now-sanctioned crypto mixer. Pertsev will stay in jail for at least another 90 days, a judge in the Netherlands ruled on Wednesday. The developer has not been officially charged with any crime.
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Pertsev was arrested on Aug. 10 in Amsterdam by Netherlands’ Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD), two days after the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned Tornado Cash, linking it to North Korean hackers and over US$1 billion worth of illicit transactions.
During Wednesday’s closed-door hearing in Den Bosch, a court rejected the developer’s lawyers’ request for bail, setting a 90-day time limit within which a public hearing must be offered to Pertsev, a spokesperson for the Dutch courts said.
Amsterdam-based Pertsev was first summoned before an examining judge on Aug. 12, with authorities seeking custody for two weeks. Web3 developers worry that the arrest could damage open-source software developments, as other developers could also be held responsible for how their code is being used.
FIOD first started probing Tornado Cash in June, saying that the crypto mixing service doesn’t comprehensively check whether the digital assets are of criminal origin. Saturday saw over 50 people gather in Amsterdam’s Dam Square to protest the arrest of the Tornado Cash developer. Some of the protesters raised placards that read “open source [code] is not a crime.”
Pertsev’s wife, Xenia Malik, was also among the protesters. Malik told Cointelegraph that she was forbidden from speaking to her husband, who is treated as if he “were a dangerous criminal.”
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