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Coin Center to Appeal Tornado Cash Court Loss Against US Treasury

Coin Center loses lawsuit against US Treasury over sanctions on Tornado Cash. Plans to appeal the verdict regarding cryptocurrency mixer.

Key Takeaways

  • Coin Center loses lawsuit against US Treasury over Tornado Cash sanctions.
  • Legal experts anticipated the outcome, citing deference to regulatory agencies.
  • OFAC sanctioned Tornado Cash, alleging ties to North Korean cybercriminals.
  • Coin Center remains committed to appealing the verdict.

Cryptocurrency Mixer Tornado

Coin Center, a prominent cryptocurrency advocacy group, recently faced a legal setback in its lawsuit against the US Treasury regarding sanctions imposed on Tornado Cash. The verdict, handed down on October 30, affirmed the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (OFAC) right to include the cryptocurrency mixer Tornado Cash in its sanctions list.

The lawsuit, initiated by Coin Center, argued that OFAC had exceeded its statutory authority by imposing sanctions on Tornado Cash, an Ethereum-based protocol designed to enhance transaction privacy by blending cryptocurrency transactions.

Tornado Cash had come under OFAC scrutiny in August 2022, with the agency alleging that it was being utilized by the North Korean state-sponsored cybercriminal group, Lazarus Group.

Treasury Lacked

Coin Center’s position was rooted in the assertion that Tornado Cash was not an individual or entity but an open-source software tool. As such, they argued that the Treasury lacked the authorization to sanction computer code.

Despite the setback, Coin Center remains resolute in its pursuit of justice. Neeraj Agrawal, Coin Center’s director of communications, expressed disappointment over the verdict and confirmed the organization’s intention to appeal the decision.

The Treasury Department has yet to issue a response or comment on the matter, leaving the legal battle ongoing.

To Conclude

While the court’s decision may not have come as a surprise to legal experts like Moish Peltz, who cited the typical deference given to regulatory agencies by trial courts, it underscores the importance of clarifying the boundaries of authority in the ever-evolving world of cryptocurrency regulations.

As the appeal process unfolds, it will be interesting to see how this case shapes the legal landscape for cryptocurrency protocols and the extent to which they can be subject to government sanctions. Coin Center’s determination to challenge the verdict signifies a commitment to ensuring fairness and transparency within the industry.