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Vitalik Buterin Makes Generous Donation To Help Tornado Cash Developers

Buterin donates 30 ETH to support the legal battle of Tornado Cash developers.

Ethereum’s co-founder, Vitalik Buterin, has donated 30 ETH, valued at approximately $113,000, to a fund dedicated to supporting the legal defense of Tornado Cash’s co-founders charged with money laundering.

According to on-chain data, Buterin’s address, vitalik.eth, made the donation earlier today to the “Free Alexey & Roman” legal fund on Juicebox, a decentralized crypto and web3 funding platform.

The fund has continued to receive massive support from the crypto community, with ETH donations and accompanying messages like “Code is not guilty” and “Justice finally comes.” Donations to the fund are currently sitting at 592.44 at press time, valued at approximately $2.2 million.

Tornado Cash Legal Battle

Recall that in 2022, the US Treasury Department blacklisted Tornado Cash, an open-source, non-custodial crypto mixer. The platform operates as a privacy tool that allows users to anonymously make crypto transactions.

The U.S. government alleged that the platform allowed hackers to launder over $7 billion in cryptocurrency. Following the blacklisting, Tornado Cash’s co-founders, Alexey Pertsev and Roman Storm, were arrested.

Earlier this month, a Dutch court pronounced Pertsev guilty of money laundering and sentenced him to 64 months in prison. While Pertsev was not accused of directly committing this crime, the judge claimed that Tornado Cash was “intended for criminals” and “completely facilitated by criminals.”

Prosecutors also alleged that as the founder, Pertsev should have suspected and stopped the flow of illegal assets through the platform. A few days after his sentencing, however, Pertsev filed an appeal with the S-Hertogenbosch Court of Appeal in the Netherlands, challenging the verdict.

Roman Storm, on the other hand, remains detained in the US since his arrest in 2023. He is scheduled to appear in court in September.

Buterin Continues to Show Support for Tornado Cash

Buterin has long been a vocal advocate for crypto privacy solutions like Tornado Cash. He even admitted to using the service to make donations to Ukraine in 2022 to support the country’s war against Russia.

During the DappCon event in Berlin, a global developer conference for Ethereum DApps, Buterin said he was disappointed with Pertsev’s guilty verdict and called it “unfortunate.”

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