ShapeShift CEO Voorhees Hits Back at “Deceptive” Wall Street Journal

“Incorrect and deceptive”, an “attack”, says Erik Voorhees, CEO and founder of ShapeShift instant crypto-asset exchange, returning fire at the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) after he and ShapeShift were subjects of a WSJ investigation on money laundering late last month.

Voorhees stated that the WSJ “misrepresented their intentions” during the five months when ShapeShift was accommodating the Journal’s investigation, even claiming that the Journal itself facilitated illicit activity in order to build a compelling story, rather than reporting their findings to ShapeShift.

As CryptoGlobe recently reported, Voorhees and ShapeShift were the principal antagonists of the WSJ’s expos茅 on money laundering and illicit exchange activity, in which the Journal claimed that they had tracked $88 million laundered through cryptocurrency exchanges, and that this sum was “only a narrow slice” of the full amount they suspected laundered.

Building on earlier reactions to the article, Voorhees’ latest response was comprehensive, claiming that the WSJ “exhibits a profound failure to grasp how blockchains, in general, and our system in particular, really work”.

He went on to treat and debunk one specific example brought forth by the Journal -- complete with relevant bitcoin addresses -- and alluded to many more like it. According to Voorhees, the WJS itself has declined to respond ShapeShift’s counter-requests for more information and transaction data regarding alleged illicit transactions.

Voorhees touted the bona fides of the ShapeShift platform’s Anti-Money-Laundering and Know-Your-Customer (AML/KYC) credentials and safeguards, claiming "[n]ot a single dollar, euro, or yen has ever been laundered through ShapeShift. It can’t be done”.

He also recalled ShapeShift’s historical willingness to cooperate with law-enforcement, saying the company had assisted “in over 30 investigations in 13 different countries all over the world”.

Turbulent Times for Shapesift

ShapeShift has already faced a turbulent couple of months. As reported earlier by CryptoGlobe, ShapeShift has come under fire from the opposite camp, as it were, with many in the cryptocurrency community criticizing ShapeShift’s decision to begin mandatory user registrations. Voorhees explained the logic of that decision in his latest response, saying their AML/KYC policies are implemented “upon thorough, thoughtful, and extensive legal and business-risk analysis in the interest of mitigating perceived threats”.

There has been no response from the WSJ as of press time.