Mohammed and Benamar M., two brothers accused of exploiting Platypus, an avalanche-based automated market maker (AMM) platform, were acquitted of any criminal wrongdoing in a landmark case for French justice. The judge in charge stated that the individuals just interacted with a smart contract that gave “more than it had to give.”
Platypus Hackers Acquitted After Perpetuating $9 Million Exploit
Two individuals linked to the exploit of Platypus, a stablecoin-focused automated market-making (AMM) platform built on top of Avalanche, have been acquitted of criminal wrongdoing in France. The Paris Judicial Court dropped charges of accessing a computer system, money laundering, and concealment for Mohammed and Benamar M., two brothers who managed to siphon over $9 million from Platypus’ smart contract using an exploit.
The two individuals arrested in February never denied that they exploited the platform. Instead, Mohammed acknowledged the facts, arguing that he had acted as a “white hat hacker” to help the platform correct its bugs.
Mohammed stated he exploited the emergency withdrawal function of Platypus’ smart contract to return the funds later and win a bonus of at least 10% of the amount involved, a trend that has become common in recent hacking attempts.
However, he lost control of an address that now holds almost $8.5 million that is now unrecoverable. In a later attempt, he managed to withdraw more than $280,000 from the smart contract, sending it to a mixing service to obscure the source of the funds and finally sending $13,000 to his brother, Benamar.
The court dismissed the charge of accessing an automated data processing system, given that Mohammed just interacted with a smart contract that gave “more than it had to give,” according to the judge in charge. Money laundering and concealment charges were also rejected in consequence.
Nonetheless, the judge rejected the defense’s thesis of ethical hacking, stating that the defendants might be liable in a subsequent civil complaint.
According to Le Monde, he stated:
You still have a debt linked to the loan, and Platypus will probably turn against you in civil proceedings. This decision is therefore not simple, the charges do not hold up on a criminal level.
Platypus has suffered three exploits this year, losing over $11 million in these actions.
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