- The team at Celsius Network has debunked rumors that the project’s CEO attempted to flee the United States.
- Celsius Network representatives have spoken with two crypto media publications pointing out that all its team members are dedicated to stabilizing the project’s liquidity and operations.
The team at Celsius Network has denied information circulating through the various social media platforms that the project’s CEO had attempted to flee the United States.
The Celsius Network team told CoinTelegraph that the rumors were false. They added that everyone at the project is dedicated to restoring entire operations at the lending platform, stating the following:
All Celsius employees — including our CEO — are focused and hard at work in an effort to stabilize liquidity and operations. To that end, any reports that the Celsius CEO has attempted to leave the U.S. are false.
Similarly, the Celsius Network told Watcher Guru through the Tweet below that ‘all Celsius employees – including our CEO – are focused and hard at work in an effort to stabilize liquidity and operations.’
EXCLUSIVE: Celsius Network tells Watcher Guru that “all Celsius employees – including our CEO – are focused and hard at work in an effort to stabilize liquidity and operations.”
— Watcher.Guru (@WatcherGuru) June 28, 2022
Rumors that Celsius Network CEO, Alex Mashinsky, Had Tried to Leave the United States.
The news of Celsius Network CEO, Alex Mashinsky, attempting to leave the United States was first highlighted by the Co-founder of the crypto analytics firm Digital Assets Data, Mike Alfred, through a Tweet on Sunday.
BREAKING: Alex Mashinsky attempted to leave the country this week via Morristown Airport but was stopped by authorities. Unclear at this moment whether he was arrested or simply barred from leaving. Please contact me if you have more information on this.
— Mike Alfred (@mikealfred) June 27, 2022
In the tweet, Mr. Alfred stated that Celsius CEO, Alex Mashinsky, had been barred from leaving the United States through the Morristown Airport. He also added that it was unclear whether Mr. Mashinsky was arrested or simply stopped from leaving the country.
It Has Been Over 2 Weeks Since Celsius Network Paused Withdrawals.
To note is that it has been over two weeks since the Celsius Network paused all withdrawals on the lending platform. Withdrawals were officially halted on June 13th. Since then, a lot has transpired, including the Celsius Network team hiring advisors to assist with the company’s restructuring and exploring the possibility of filing for bankruptcy.
In addition, the behemoth Wall Street bank of Goldman Sachs has floated the idea of seeking $2 billion from crypto investors to buy Celsius’ assets.
US Government Prohibits American Citizens from Interacting with Tornado Cash
- The U.S. sanctioned Tornado Cash, the mixing token that makes Ethereum transactions untraceable.
- The U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control posted the updated sanctions list.
- The order makes it illegal for U.S. citizens to use Tornado Cash.
- Tornado Cash is open source, and many believe the sanctions deny Americans their “constitutional right to anonymity.”
Tornado cash has just today been sanctioned by the U.S. Government, a move which would presumably prohibit any address that interacted with it. This is not the first time the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) targeted crypto mixers after sanctioning Bitcoin Mixer Blender back in May.
According to Senior Crypto Analyst Dylan LeClair, CirclePay’s USDC has officially blacklisted every Ethereum address sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury.
According to OFAC, the virtual currency mixer Tornado Cash has been used to launder around $7 billion of virtual currency since its creation in 2019. The U.S. claims that Tornado Cash is a haven for malicious cyber activities in Northern Korea and other criminal groups.
“Today, for the first time, Treasury is sanctioning a virtual currency mixer,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson in the press release.
“Virtual currency mixers that assist illicit transactions threaten U.S. national security interests. We are taking action against illicit financial activity by the DPRK and will not allow state-sponsored thievery and its money-laundering enablers to go unanswered.”
Blender and Tornado Cash have been linked to Lazarus Group, a cyber hacking group that has carried the largest virtual currency hacks to date. Its victims were Axie Infinity, from which almost $620 million were stolen, and around $20.5 million was used on Blender to launder the illicit proceeds.
According to data from blockchain firm Nansen, Ethereum transactions spiked after Axie Infinity’s hack last year.
Crypto advocates are not happy with the move. Jerry Brito, executive director of Coin Center, told Fortune that the sanction denies Americans “their constitutional right to anonymity.” According to Brito, anyone who interacts with addresses could be in violation, even if they received funds from Tornado Cash without their consent. He believes that because the fund is open source, nothing stops a money launderer from tweaking the code and creating a fork of the chain.
The U.S Treasury Department official said on a press call that they would continue monitoring mixers and would immediately take action when required.
Binance Removes Off-Chain Fund Transfer Channel Between Itself And WazirX
- Binance has ceased the off-chain fund transfer channel between itself and WazirX
- On-chain transfers will still be available for the users to deposit and withdraw.
Leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance has recently decided to remove the off-chain fund transfer channel between itself and the Indian exchange WazirX.
Binance Suspends Off-Chain Transfer Channel Between Itself And WazirX
Per an officially released statement, Binance has reiterated its previous stance against the Indian crypto exchange WazirX, stating that the exchange does not own or manage WazirX in any way possible.
Furthermore, the exchange has now officially removed the off-chain fund transfer channel between the two exchanges, which will come into effect from August 11.
“To provide clarity and protection for users, we are removing the off-chain fund transfer channel between WazirX and Binance. Effective from 2022-08-11 03:00 (UTC), Binance will cease to support off-chain fund transfers between WazirX Exchange and Binance via the “Login with Binance” option.” The blog adds.
In simpler terms, off-chain transfers occur outside of a blockchain network and are actively managed by deploying a mechanism to aid such particular transfers.
The exchange further clarified that it will not be halting its on-chain transfers at the moment.
The exchange later added how Binance will continue to support Indian regulators and provide all necessary assistance needed by the officials to investigate the said matter in depth.
“Moving forward, Binance will support Indian regulators in the ongoing matters concerning WazirX. Binance believes in keeping an open dialogue with regulators, policymakers, and the law enforcement community as we collectively seek to establish a global regulatory framework for the industry.” The blog later adds.
The controversy between Binance and WazirX stemmed two days ago when Binance’s CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted that the exchange had never officially acquired WazirX.
In a comprehensive thread tweeted later, CZ further added how the WazirX-Binance transaction was never complete, and that the exchange had no control over WazirX’s control operations including “user-sign up, KYC trading and initiating withdrawals.”
Macro Guru Raoul Pal: Most Participants Are Underinvested in Ethereum
- Crypto Expert and Macro Guru Raoul Pal declared on Twitter today that he believes most participants are still underweight in Ethereum.
- The Founder of Real Vision Academy followed on to say that the pain will be at higher entry points, around $2,300.
- Raoul Pal was famously previously bullish on Ethereum on October 29, 2021, where he confirmed he was “irresponsibly long” via a tweet that has been shared many times since on social media.
- Ethereum merge, which will mark the end of POW and transition to POS is scheduled in September.
Real Vision Academy founder and macro guru Raoul Pal posted his thoughts on Ethereum earlier today via his official Twitter account.
According to Pal, Ethereum, the second highest digital asset by market cap, has higher to go in terms of price. The crypto expert believes that most participants in the market are underweight Ethereum and are expecting failure at resistance.
Raoul Pal’s view is that the more significant battle with resistance will be around $2,300. Ethereum’s price is currently $1,768.32%, and the coin has increased 3.3% in the last 24 hours.
Raul Pal shared his market thoughts previously and most famously on October 29, 2021 when he posted a tweet on being “irresponsibly long” on Ethereum.
This tweet faced a lot of criticism on social media, as, at the time, the price of Ethereum was $4,288.10, and it was only a few weeks after the markets crashed, and crypto prices dropped severely when some reached pre-covid prices.
Ethereum Merge scheduled in September
It is important to note that the Ethereum Merge is scheduled soon, with a tentative date of September 19. Ethereum price has increased 43.5% in the past 30 days anticipating the merge. The Ethereum merge will mark the end of proof of work on Ethereum and the full transition to proof of stake. The merge is set to reduce Ethereum’s energy consumption by approximately 99.95 % according to Ethereum’s official website.
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