Tornado DAO Grapples With Arrests as Discord, Governance Forum Go Dark


The Discord server and Tornado DAO governance forum linked to the recently sanctioned crypto mixing service Tornado Cash appear to have been disabled.

Tornado Cash is an Ethereum-centric mixing tool which was sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control on Monday. Following the crackdown, crypto projects throughout the ecosystem have struggled with how to reckon with the fact that the U.S. government has, for the first time, sanctioned a smart contract—what amounts to software or computer code—and not an individual or a group.

Tensions within the industry were further heightened today when, this morning, Dutch police confirmed that they arrested a 29-year-old “suspected developer” in Amsterdam in connection with Tornado Cash.

“He is suspected of involvement in concealing criminal financial flows and facilitating money laundering through the mixing of cryptocurrencies through the decentralized Ethereum mixing service Tornado Cash,” the Netherlands Crime Agency (FIOD) said in a statement.

Members of the Tornado Cash DAO, which organize through Discord, are now grappling with how to keep the project alive. But a link to the Discord server accessed through Google Chrome on desktop now leads to an invalid invite error message. If it has been deleted, it’s the latest move in an escalating crackdown on the project.

Meanwhile, the forum that Tornado DAO members used to discuss and govern the project also seems to have been taken down. A link that used to lead to a proposal where DAO members were discussing ways to potentially salvage the project earlier this week now returns an error message.

An error message on the page that used to be the Tornado DAO’s governance forum. Source: Torn.Community

Despite the DAO’s forum having been taken down, the community that governs the project did manage to unanimously approve a proposal to add themselves as signatories on Tornado’s $22 million treasury.

The change would make it easier to approve transactions, wrote the author of the proposal, “if ever something happens to 2 signers, we could still be able to manage the community fund.”

An archived version of the proposal to change the Tornado Cash multisig on its treasury. Source: Internet Archive

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