Tor Developer Jacob Appelbaum Accused Of Sexual Mistreatment; Quits


Jacon Appelbaum, developer at Tor and member of the core team, has quit the project, after allegations of his “sexual mistreatment” surfaced. The Tor Project initially released a short note on June 2nd, 2016, noting that Appelbaum had left on May 25th, 2016. A more detailed statement was posted on June 4th, 2016, with more details.

The detailed statement notes that several members of the Tor Project had heard such allegations against Appelbaum before. It states:

These types of allegations were not entirely new to everybody at Tor; they were consistent with rumors some of us had been hearing for some time. That said, the most recent allegations are much more serious and concrete than anything we had heard previously.

Shari Steele, the Executive Director of the Tor Project, is listed as the author of the statement. She is quick to note that the members of the project do not want to pass any judgements without possessing all the facts of the matter. However, the decision for Appelbaum to step down was taken after communicating with the complainants.

… after we talked with some of the complainants, and after extensive internal deliberation and discussion, Jacob stepped down from his position as an employee of The Tor Project.

The Tor Project has also hired a legal firm which specialises in these matters to help them handle it and investigate the issue internally. The statement notes that due to the sensitivity of the alleged issues, the results of these investigations will probably not be publicly released.

We don’t know yet where those investigations will lead or if other people involved with Tor are implicated. We will act as quickly as possible to accurately determine the facts as best we can. Out of respect for the individuals involved, we do not expect results to be made public.

People with any information about these allegations have been requested to contact the Tor Project. Any potential victims have been asked to contact law enforcement agencies. The statement ends stating the Tor Project’s desire to maintain a balance between being transparent and accountable, and respecting individual privacy. The statement also says that this is likely the last public release on the issue.

  Source: The Tor Project Blog
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