US Senator Criticizes DOJ Over Non-Custodial Wallets, Vows to Defend Bitcoin Rights

May 2, 2024

Wyoming’s Republican Senator Cynthia Lummis has voiced strong opposition to the Biden administration’s Department of Justice (DOJ), criticizing its stance on non-custodial wallet software in the realm of cryptocurrency. In a pointed statement, Senator Lummis expressed deep concern over what she termed the DOJ’s “hyper-aggressive argument” that such software could constitute a money transmission service.

Lummis’ remarks were triggered by the DOJ’s recent reply brief regarding the indictment against Roman Storm, the developer of Tornado Cash, whose lawyers moved to dismiss the charges against him.

“I am deeply troubled by the Department of Justice’s hyper-aggressive argument that non-custodial software can constitute a money transmission service,” Senator Lummis expressed on the social media platform X (formerly Twitter).

She further elaborated that this position goes against existing Treasury guidance, common sense, and the rule of law.

Highlighting the broader implications, Lummis emphasized that arguments against self-custody software threaten fundamental property rights inherent to American values. “I will do everything I can to fight for your rights to hold your own keys and run your own node,” she affirmed.

Senator Lummis’ stance underscores the escalating tensions between cryptocurrency advocates and policymakers, particularly as the Biden administration intensifies its scrutiny of digital assets. This scrutiny has seen bipartisan engagement, with U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bill Cassidy also weighing in, expressing concerns over illicit activities facilitated by cryptocurrencies.

Their concerns have prompted federal agencies to ramp up efforts to combat criminal exploitation of digital currencies. The DOJ has taken decisive action against platforms like KuCoin and Binance, citing charges related to operating unlicensed money-transmitting businesses and processing suspicious transactions.

At the core of this debate lies the clash between privacy and regulatory imperatives. Privacy-focused cryptocurrencies and mixing services have increasingly drawn scrutiny for allegedly facilitating money laundering, particularly linked to crimes like Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM).

With calls for tighter regulation and enhanced oversight gaining momentum, federal agencies are stepping up efforts to bolster their capabilities for detecting and prosecuting illicit cryptocurrency transactions. Senator Lummis’ vocal criticism signals a widening rift over the regulatory landscape for digital assets, setting the stage for continued debate and legislative action in cryptocurrency policy.

Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.