Coin Center Files Lawsuit Against Janet Yellen Tornado Cash Sanctions
New York City: The cryptocurrency research organization known as Coin Center has filed a lawsuit against the Secretary of the United States Treasury, Janet Yellen, in response to the sanctions that were imposed on the coin mixer known as Tornado Cash. The lawsuit claims that the service has legitimate applications.
Coin Center referred to Tornado Cash as “an open-source software solution that helps Americans retain their privacy while utilizing cryptocurrencies” in the legal action that was initiated in the state of Florida on Wednesday of this week.
Regarding the sanctions issued by the Office of Foreign Asset Control, the complaint claimed that “The Administration’s use of the foreign-affairs authority to penalize domestic cryptocurrency users was unprecedented and illegitimate.” This was in reference to the penalties that were imposed (OFAC).
The United States Secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, as well as the Director of OFAC, Andrea Gacki, were both listed as defendants in the lawsuit. Among the plaintiffs mentioned in the claim were crypto investor David Hoffman, who was located in New York, and software engineer Patrick O’Sullivan, who was located in Florida.
The lawsuit claims that Hoffman has been “dusted” in the past, which means that someone has sent him a modest amount of ETH through Tornado Cash after the service was sanctioned in an effort to get him into legal trouble. This allegation is based on the fact that Hoffman is named as a defendant in the lawsuit.
The cryptocurrency industry as a whole, including Coin Center, has made it clear on several times that OFAC does not typically penalize software, and that Tornado Cash is not managed by any centralized organization. This is one of the points that Coin Center has emphasized.
Tornado Cash is a currency mixing service that operates on the Ethereum (ETH) network. Its purpose is to increase the users’ level of anonymity and make it more difficult to determine who is the owner of what on the network. In August, OFAC imposed sanctions on the service due to allegations that North Korean hackers had used the site to launder hundreds of millions of dollars. The allegations were made by the government agency.
In the same way that Bitcoin (BTC) is a transparent network, Ethereum is also a transparent network. This implies that users who send transactions have the ability to expose the recipient to their full transaction history. Tornado Cash is one method that has become popular among users that place a high priority on maintaining their anonymity.
The United States Department of the Treasury provided clarification in September that the sanctions do not restrict persons residing in the United States from accessing and spreading the open-source Tornado Cash code.