Tornado Cash Developer Set to be Released

Alex Pertsev, the developer behind the popular crypto mixing service Tornado Cash, is set to be released from prison after nearly nine months of detention. Pertsev was arrested by Dutch authorities in August last year on suspicion of being involved in money laundering through Tornado Cash, which had dozens of its addresses placed on the OFAC sanctions list by the United States Treasury Department.

The news of Pertsev’s release under surveillance was met with rejoicing in the crypto community, as it allows him to prepare his defense fully. His partner, who has been advocating for his release, expressed regret for the wasted time that he spent in prison, which had a powerful effect on both of their lives.

Pertsev’s case centers around Tornado Cash, a crypto mixing service that makes transactions anonymous and difficult to trace. Crypto mixers such as Tornado Cash are often used to obfuscate the origin of crypto transactions. These platforms mix one cryptocurrency transaction with others and send them to different wallet addresses, making it challenging for authorities to track the flow of funds.

Prosecutors argue that Pertsev acted as a central figure in Tornado Cash’s operation, making him an essential target in the investigation into money laundering. However, Pertsev’s legal team has maintained that he did not do anything wrong and that the platform was merely providing a privacy-enhancing service.

In November, a Dutch court denied Pertsev’s plea to be released under surveillance, citing concerns that he posed a flight risk. His bail was denied again in February. However, with the latest decision to release him under surveillance, Pertsev will now be able to walk around and work on his defense, which was virtually impossible while detained.

The Tornado Cash platform was one of the most popular mixing services before the sanctions were imposed, highlighting the growing trend of crypto users seeking greater privacy and anonymity in their transactions. The case involving Pertsev will be closely watched by those interested in the legal implications of crypto mixing services and their role in facilitating money laundering.

In conclusion, Pertsev’s upcoming release from prison has been welcomed by the crypto community, but his case is far from over. As the use of crypto mixing services continues to gain popularity, regulatory authorities will need to grapple with the legal implications of such platforms and their role in enabling financial crimes.


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Amber To Launch In 44 States Across The U.S.

Australian-based bitcoin exchange Amber is set for its U.S. launch in 44 states via a public beta release.

Amber, the Australian-based Bitcoin accumulation app that has spawned an entire generation of Dollar Cost Average (DCA) products around the world, has announced its launch in the United States, per a press release sent to Bitcoin Magazine.

“We decided to get the app rolled out in stages, so the first few releases in the US won’t have all the functionality we have back home in Australia, but it’s a start,” said Amber CEO and Founder Aleks Svetski. “We want to get the product in people’s hands so we can better prioritize what people want to see us build next.”

The app is currently in private beta for both iOS and Android, with plans to move to a public beta this upcoming October. Customers will have access to Amber Basic and also the option of their premium service, Amber Black, which offers users to stack as much bitcoin as they want with no fees. The app will be live across 44 states once the beta goes public.

Following the U.S. launch, the company is aiming to expand in the emerging markets in Latin and South America. The vision Amber has for the app is to become an all in one “super app” where users can have access to purchasing power in the form of fiat, earn bitcoin and shop inside the app, all without ever having to sell their bitcoin.

Svetski explained: “Bitcoin companies are not just the future of finance, but the future of freedom technology. Just like Bitcoin ‘breaks all the models,’ Bitcoin businesses will break all the legacy businesses across verticals as diverse as social networking, investing, saving, communications, gaming, commerce, transport and you name it.”

Amber boasts investors such as Fulgur Ventures, Morgan Creek Digital and a major Australian university. They recently closed more funding from lead investor Fundamental Labs and are launching a short campaign on BnkToTheFuture this week that will let people invest in the company and get exposure to its upside.

You can find Amber on Twitter: @TheAmberApp

You can also find out more about their BnkToTheFuture campaign at:


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Russians Donate $120,000 of BTC for Navalny’s Release

Key Takeaways

  • Russian authorities arrested the leader of the opposition party Alexei Navalny last Sunday at an airport, citing a 2014 conviction.
  • Over 40,000 individuals staged protests for Navalny’s release.
  • The Bitcoin address associated with Navalny’s political party has received $120,000 since the arrest.

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A Bitcoin address connected to the release of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has received over $120,000, as protestors flooded the streets of Moscow this weekend.

Bitcoin Funding in Release Protest

On Jan. 17, Russian police in Moscow arrested Navalny at the Moscow airport as he arrived from Berlin. Officials said that a 2014 conviction provoked his arrest last Sunday.

Navalny called for a nation-wide protest and citizens complied, with thousands of protestors pouring onto the nation’s capital.

Navalny’s political party Foundation for Combating Corruption (FBK) is a non-profit organization which does not list the party’s BTC address for legal reasons. Nevertheless, the group’s “headquarter” website, which is linked to on the homepage, accepts donations via wire transfer, PayPal, and Bitcoin.

The party’s address has received numerous donations totalling 3.5 BTC ($120,000) since his arrest, and a total of 657.1 BTC ($21.3 million) since the party first started accepting Bitcoin donations. Donations continue to arrive in the address.

Bitcoin has been a part of public protests and covert operations around the world, from helping protestors in Hong Kong last year to funding the U.S. Capitol riots. 

Vladimir Putin has called the protests illegal and dangerous. Reportedly, more than 3000 protestors were detained in Moscow.

Who is Alexei Navalny?

Alexei Navalny is a lawyer turned activist who began criticizing Russian President Vladimir Putin in the 2000s. He announced his presidential candidacy in 2016.

The political activist has faced severe backlash from the government, especially for his reports against Putin. Navalny has spent time in jail on account of reportedly illegitimate charges and has also been poisoned—most recently in August, which sent him into a coma.

The Russian opposition leader has received support from Joe Biden’s administration, asking for his release.

In other cryptocurrency news, the Russian Ministry of Labor banned state officials from holding any cryptocurrency. The new rule not only prevents federal and local employees from purchasing new cryptocurrency—it also demands the sale of old purchases as well.

Disclosure: This author held Bitcoin at the time of publication.

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