Peter Phillip Nash, the former moderator of the Silk Road website, came out of jail after 18 months served. The man Charged with conspiring to traffic drugs and money laundering on the dark web, which carries a minimum of 10 years in prison for the, however, the court realized that Nash was only a minor player and not an “active” member of the Silk Road staff. Last December, Queensland’s Public Safety Business Agency informed Mr Nash his blue card had been revoked, A successful appeal granted the former moderator a safety valve relief, which got him a blue card.
Michelle Howard, a member at Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal, published a judgment where she confirmed that Nash was just a website moderator, despite the fact that the man pleaded guilty to conspiring to traffic drugs.
“It has been only a little over two and half years since Mr. Nash ceased using drugs,” Howard wrote. “I am satisfied that in Mr. Nash’s case, the risk is very low … for both similar charges or drug-taking.”
Nash was charged with conspiracy to distribute narcotics in December 2013. He pleaded that he became involved with the Silk Road website when his work became “challenging and isolating”, to buy illicit controlled substances for his own use and for social connection. The judge made this statement regarding Nash’s judgment:
“He was asked by the person/s behind Silk Road (whom he did not personally know other than online) to moderate a chat forum on an associated website (which contained discussions about Silk Road and other issues, but through which drugs were not sold). He agreed and did so for some 10 months. He was paid (in bitcoins) as an employee to moderate the forum. He used the money he earned (equivalent to about A$25,000) to purchase illicit drugs for his own consumption from Silk Road. He agreed that he knew the proceeds were from narcotics trafficking and that it was being processed in a way to hide the money from law enforcement. He was aware that significant quantities of drugs were distributed through Silk Road. The prosecution told the court that in all about $200 million worth of narcotics sales were conducted at the site, although there is no suggestion that Mr. Nash knew the volume was so large.”