Ross Ulbricht, popularly known as the `Dread Pirate Roberts´, the owner of the infamous Silk Road market, has been transferred without any prior notice to the family. The family paid a visit to him, and upon the visit, they realized that their beloved, Ross Ulbricht had been transferred away from the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York.
The news that came after his arrest was in series, and it seems not to have ended. The family publicly announced the transfer of Ross on Twitter, and they did not realize until the next day. Ross is now in another correctional unit. The tweet states that: “Ross called, and I am so happy to hear from him. He’s at OK City Fed’l Transfer Ctr being designated to a prison. He’s in good spirits.”
Ross Ulbricht, the Old Silk Road, the Law
The Silk Road Darknet website was arguably the popular market on the internet in 2013. The founder, Ross Ulbricht was arrested by the FBI on series of criminal counts. He was charged with computer hacking, money laundering and in possession of narcotics which is illegal by law.
It was reported that He was the first person to be arrested in Silk Road related case, for using the website as a medium to deliver MDMA and cocaine to Europe.
Before the FBI closed down the website, it was listed as a platform that encouraged the operation of hackers, the sales of firearms, counterfeit cash, ammunitions, and forged IDs. It also supported the services of hitmen. Christopher Tarbell, FBI cyber crime specialist who led the investigation said, the Silk Road website “sought to make conducting illegal transactions on the Internet as easy and frictionless as shopping online at mainstream e-commerce websites.”
Ross was a successful Darknet market owner. This website generated $9.5 million bitcoin in sales revenue. Also, the site owner obtained a commission of about 600,000 bitcoin.
His arrest was engineered by the cooperation of the FBI and an overseas hosting company which hosted the infamous Silk Road. With the cooperation of the local enforcement, the private messages of “Dread Pirate” were accessed by the FBI. Even though the website prohibits the sales of weapons and the solicitations of murders, the actual operations of the website say otherwise. It hosted over 1,000 dealers who delivered illicit drugs to over 100,000 buyers all over the globe.
Ulbricht was given a life sentence by Judge Katherine Forrest of Manhattan’s US District Court for the Southern District of New York. The sentence which was read to the court by Judge Forrest states that: “The stated purpose of Silk Road was to be beyond the law. In the world you created over time, democracy didn’t exist. You were captain of the ship, the Dread Pirate Roberts. You made your own laws.”
The Silk Road website had 10,000 items for sale on 2013. Cannabis, MDMA, and heroin formed part of the 7,000 drugs for sale on the website. It was a successful website monetarily.
Ulbricht begged that “I know you must take away my middle years, but please leave me my old age.”
He added that: “I’ve changed. I’m not the man I was when I created Silk Road.” He continued: “I’m a little wiser, a little more mature and much more humble.”
Despite the plea and other arguments presented to the court to reconsider the sentence, the Judge dismissed all those arguments.
One argument which presented to the court was that the Silk Road has reduced harm among drug users. They presented that the drugs on the street have been reduced because of the website; however, the Judge dismissed the argument. The Judge said: “No drug dealer from the Bronx has ever made this argument to the court. It’s a privileged argument and it’s an argument made by one of the privileged.”
She added that: “The idea that it is harm-reducing is so narrow, and aimed at such a privileged group of people who are using drugs in the privacy of their own homes using their personal internet connections.”
There were numerous efforts to appeal the life sentence, but all failed as the arguments presented were not convincing enough.
The co-founder of the website was also arrested by the police, and the website has been shut down by the FBI.
The booming of Darknet trade begun with the closure of Silk Road, and it is said that the preference given to this news by the media created the consciousness of Darknet existence. This attracted many markets into the online trade network.
Ross Ulbricht is now on the journey of his life sentence.