U.S. Treasury links the crypto mixer with $7 billion worth of laundered money.
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Summer is still on, harvesting the fresh names for its list of the crypto companies in deep trouble. This time, the trouble came not from the market or management but from the United States Treasury Department. The regulator has added more than 40 cryptocurrency addresses allegedly connected to crypto mixer Tornado Cash to the Specially Designated Nationals list. These individuals and groups allegedly laundered more than $7 billion worth of cryptocurrency.
Accusations like this don’t come easy — one of the co-founders of Tornado Cash has reported his account suspended at GitHub, while the issuer of the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin, Circle, froze over 75,000 USDC worth of funds linked to the problematic addresses. By the end of last week, Dutch Fiscal Information and Investigation Service arrested a 29-year-old developer suspected of being involved in money laundering.
The enforcers’ activity has not been taken with a light heart by the industry. Figures like Jake Chervinsky and Jerry Brito criticized the Treasury Department for acting against the tool instead of punishing the concrete individuals. Someone even started a prank campaign, making transactions from Tornado Cash’s smart contract addresses to celebrities such as Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong and American television host Jimmy Fallon.
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