DOJ Charges Samourai Wallet Founders with Money Laundering in Crypto Mixer Case

DOJ Charges Samourai Wallet Founders with Money Laundering in Crypto Mixer Case

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has made a significant move in the realm of crypto crime, announcing the arrest of the two founders of Samourai Wallet, a crypto mixing service allegedly involved in laundering over $100 million in criminal proceeds. The accused, CEO Keonne Rodriguez and CTO William Lonergan Hill, face charges including conspiracy to commit money laundering and operate an unlicensed money transmitting business.

According to the DOJ, Samourai Wallet, operating since 2015, purported to provide privacy-focused services but was allegedly designed to assist criminals in laundering money and evading sanctions. Features like “Whirlpool” and “Ricochet” were allegedly crafted to obscure the origins of crypto transactions, aiding in large-scale money laundering schemes.

The crackdown on Samourai Wallet’s operations extended globally, with the assistance of Icelandic authorities leading to the seizure of its domain and servers. Additionally, a seizure warrant was served for its mobile application on the Google Play Store.


Prosecutors claim that Samourai Wallet actively courted criminal clientele, as evidenced by marketing materials cited in the indictment. The company’s alleged involvement in concealing the proceeds of cybercrime, including hacks targeting web servers and phishing schemes, underscores law enforcement’s efforts to dismantle infrastructures supporting illicit activities in the crypto space.

This latest legal action echoes similar recent cases, such as the conviction of a Russian-Swedish national for money laundering through Bitcoin Fog and the arrest of a founder of Tornado Cash mixer. As regulators and law enforcement agencies intensify their focus on combating crypto-related crime, the industry faces heightened scrutiny, emphasizing the importance of compliance and transparency in the evolving crypto landscape.