Ethereum founder donates 100,000 euros to developers convicted in the Netherlands

Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin has donated a large amount to support the legal battle of Tornado Cash developers Alexey Pertsev and Roman Storm.

Ethereum worth 100 thousand euros

From Ethereum data blockchain researcher Etherscan it appears that Buterin transferred 30 ethers to the legal fund “Free Alexey & Roman” this weekend. Against the current one Ethereum price those coins are worth 100 thousand euros.

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Tornado Cash is a service on the Ethereum blockchain that enables anonymous crypto transactions. In 2022, the United States imposed sanctions on the platform. They claimed it was used to launder illegal money and posed a threat to national security.

Distributed for 64 months in the Netherlands

Afterwards, the developers of Tornado Cash were sued. Earlier this month, a court in the Netherlands sentenced Alexey Pertsev to 64 months in prison for laundering billions of dollars in cryptocurrency.

US authorities also arrested Roman Storm last year. The US Department of Justice has charged him and his colleague Roman Semenov with helping the North Korean hacking group Lazarus launder their criminal proceeds.

Asking for donations

In January, Roman Storm asked for donations to fund his legal defense. In a video on social media platform X, he said the outcome of his trial would have major implications for the future of digital currencies.

“Roman and Alex need your help to build a strong defense not just for themselves, but for crypto users and developers worldwide. In response to the arrests, a group of sympathizers came together to form WeWantJusticeDAO to advocate on their behalf and raise money for legal defense. However, time and money are running out and we need your support.”

The legal fund on decentralized fundraising platform Juicebox has received 597.07 ethers to date. This has a value of 2.1 million euros. According to the initiative, Roman and Alexey’s legal costs are between 90 thousand and 100 thousand dollars (92 thousand euros) per month.

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