Fresh Set Of Charges Laid Against Ross Ulbricht

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Ross UlbrichtA verdict has been determined on Ross Ulbricht’s case. He will be facing life in prison as a result of his alleged operations on the internet drug lair called Silk Road, which is where both sellers and buyers were able to send soft and hard drugs across the globe. His initial indictment happened back in February of this year with four criminal charges including, criminal and money hacking conspiracy, drug trafficking, each of which he profusely continues to deny. On Friday the 22nd of August, he faced three new charges as the Silkroad Kingpin, including identity fraud and narcotics trafficking.

The US Government laid in a 17-page amended document introducing one count each for every narcotics distribution and trafficking through the virtual facet and his fraudulent act of providing false identification documents. His attorney Joshua Dratel, however, told CoinDesk how the new charges did not in any way modify the nature of evidence. According to the new seconding indictment, the drug charges happen to be in connection with at least a kilogram of heroin, 10 grams of LSD, 500 grams of meth and 5 kilograms of cocaine sold through Silk Road.

BitcoinSince his October 2013 arrest, the FBI has seized over $33.6 million worth of Bitcoins from Ulbricht. The FBI claimed this amount of Bitcoins to have been proceeds stemming from the Silk Road operation. Early this month, Ulbricht argued in a memo that he was originally plotting on a portal called Underground Brokers, where people could buy and sell almost about anything anonymously. He claimed that he did not purposely create Silk Road for drug trafficking.

The indicted also called out the intrusion of the US authorities in trampling every bit of his digital privacy rights. Furthermore, the initial report on his drug trafficking operations triggered an ongoing investigation to every depth of his ESI (electronically stored information). It gave the authorities enough discretion to follow through the investigation.

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Alleged Silkroad Vendors Were Arrested

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Silkroad in JailStarted in 2011, the online marketplace Silkroad soon became the go-to place for all manner of illegal products. The users of Silkroad enjoyed the anonymity that they had even as they browsed. The Tor hidden services made it quite difficult for the Feds to pin down people in criminal charges. The original Silkroad was shut down temporarily before being opened up for business again as Silkroad 2.0.

Studies show that at least $30 million worth of business was being transacted on Silkroad by 2013. The business transactions are taking place courtesy of over 3800 vendors who are active site users. While the Feds have tried to hold these vendors, they are not having much luck on that front.

The Feds currently have the alleged mastermind of Silkroad Ross Ulbricht. Ross is expected to answer to charges of money laundering, conspiracy to traffic narcotics and computer hacking. He is also expected to answer to charges of conspiracy to planning a murder. For now, no one knows whether the prosecution will manage to get a conviction.

Jacob Theodore George IVThe FBI had previously arrested two previous Silkroad vendors Jacob Theodore George IV and Steven Lloyd Sadler. Jacob pleaded guilty to charges of selling bath salts and heroin while Sadler was arrested on heroin and cocaine charges. These two did cooperate with the government in the case against Ross. While their testimony may end up crucifying Ross, the burden of making that conviction rests mostly on the shoulders of the prosecution.

The fact of the matter is that three or four convictions compared to the over 3800 vendors on Silkroad is really a very small percentage. The volume of trade being done by these vendors is large. The FBI is not doing very well when it comes to arrests. The prosecution team on the other hand, is faring just as badly. As long as the Tor hidden services remain, the situation is not expected to improve. In fact, the success of the government in holding vendors accountable may go down because of Bitcoin and other digital currencies.

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Ross Ulbricht’s Family Create Legal Defence Fund

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Ross UlbrichtFamily and friends of the alleged Silk Road developer Ross Ulbricht have set a fundraising campaign in motion to collect money for his legal defense. Ulbricht was arrested late 2013. The US government accused him of being an online entity known as Dread Pirate Roberts who is alleged to be behind the former online drug mega store Silk Road. He was charged in a New York court of a number of conspiracies including money laundering and illegal drug trafficking. Mr. Ulbricht also faces charges of conspiracy to allegedly commit murder in Maryland. Authorities there claim he colluded with an undercover operative to have Silkroad’s former executive murdered.

Ross UlbrichtMr. Ulbricht’s trial is set to begin late this year in November and his family had hoped the site will help them raise about $250,000 to cater for his legal defense. Earlier on when Ross was first arrested, his friends had pledged to raise some $1,000,000 to secure his pre-trial release. The site, has so far closed in on the target with over $180,000 of the target amount raised. One of Ross’s friends, a rich and influential bit coin entrepreneur Roger Ver offered a $10 match up for every tweet done in creating awareness about the alleged Silkroad owner’s legal situation. His campaign elicited more than 16,000 tweets translating to over $160,000.

Through this campaign, the alleged Silk Road owner’s family is hoping to also inform the whole public about the legal implications of this case alongside raising money. They believe if Mr. Ulbricht is successfully convicted then the entire public can as well forget about Internet freedom going into the future. They also think that user privacy and regulations guarding crypto currency like bit coins are at stake should the government have its way. People willing help get the word out, learn the latest developments about the campaign or follow Mr. Ulbricht’s litigation can do so by visiting Those seeking to contribute can visit the link

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The Rising Sence Of A Community Among Online Dark Markets

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silkroad 2.0Internet is one of the most reliable sources of information in the world today. Hundreds if not thousands of people from all across the globe use it to purchase products and services from various online stores.

Over the last one year, there has been a rampant increase in number of people using Silk Road, a dark web, to purchase goods such as drugs. The most plausible reason for this trend is because this site is gaining credibility and trust from the online community.

Simply put, Silk Road is the leading dark online marketplace that you can visit and anonymously purchase drugs at any time. Its reputation and clean track record is clear proof that it deliver on their promises.

Let us look at some factors that fuel growth of this community.


Despite the fact that this web is considered dark by the society, the truth of the matter is that they its run by professionals who are very committed and determine to ensure that they meet their clients’ needs amicably. They have also put in place working protocols that help them maintain high professionalism and diligence levels.


Gone are the days when one had to walk into a dark alley to purchase drugs. This dark web enables users from all across the globe to purchase a wide array of products without revealing their true identity and location. They have a concrete privacy policy hence you can rest assured that any information you submit is in safe hands.



To promote their credibility and reputation in the community, this online marketplacehas put in place its own payment processing systems that are 100% secure so chances of fraud are nil. The systems are also monitored 24/7 by experts who have the skills and experience required to lock out any unauthorized access.

Finally, Silk Road offers quality products at an affordable price. They have also established shipping procedures that enables them to transport purchased goods to their customers.

Silk Road

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Latest Court Proceedings Update On Ross Ulbricht

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Ross William UlbrichtProsecution of the alleged creator of Silkroad Ross Ulbricht has had a minor triumph after a United States court rejected attempts to have the suit dismissed. The defense lawyer had in March 2014 made attempts seeking to have the judge refuse any further hearing on the case challenging allegations that Mr. Ulbricht conspired directly with silkroad customers. The suit to dismiss had also cited fault in the legal parameters defining money laundering stressing that bit coin is not covered within the confines of money laundering law.

While dismissing Mr. Ulbricht’s claims, a US district judge said the government’s case had enough grounds to have the alleged creator of Silkroad prosecuted. The court recognized that bit coins have value and that they are used purposely as a store of the same and a means of exchange. The court reiterated that prosecution has cause to show Mr. Ulbricht acted in the capacity of Silkroad’s ringleader further adding that if or not the government can substantiate these claims at this point in time is not important.

Ross William Ulbricht

Mr. Ulbricht’s defense had sought to raise doubts on the narcotics and money laundering charges as such discrediting the validity of the case as presented by the prosecutors. The defense presented in court documents that showed the defendant never acted or held a managerial position in Silkroad especially among its community. The defense attorney also pointed out that prosecution had not presented evidence to prove Mr. Ulbricht’s involvement in managerial roles.


With the court rejecting this motion to dismiss, Silkroad’s alleged creator now looks at a trial that is tentatively slated to start in November 3rd. If convicted, he faces imprisonment for continued criminal enterprise as well as computer hacking. His defense will now focus on arguing that Silkroad is an e-commerce site just like any other and should not be made to answer for illegal activities committed on the platform.

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Vendors Where Targeted By The Feds On The Original Silk Road

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On October 2013, the FBI shutdown Silkroad and arrested alleged mastermind Ross William Ulbricht. Ulbricht now faces charges of computer hacking, money laundering, conspiracy to traffic narcotics and planning murder. However, what is overlooked is the fact that there are been very few convictions of the vendors who used the website to run profitable illicit businesses.

Ross William Ulbricht

Silkroad began its life in February 2011, taking its name from the historical trade route in Asia. It quickly became the Internet’s most popular marketplace for illegal product. Thanks to Tor hidden services, users were able to browse Silkroad anonymously without having to worry about traffic being monitored. The underground site was home to a wide range of products for sale including books, art and apparel. However, it is best known as being the “ of illegal drugs”. In March 2013, it was estimated that of 10,000 products that were on sale on Silkroad 70% were drugs.

This Hidden site Has Been SeizedThe first person to be convicted as a result of transactions on Silkroad was an Australian cocaine and MDMA dealer. This conviction was a result of importing drugs through the mail to Australia. When police searched through his home they found information linking him to his Silkroad areas on this computer. Another key arrest was that of Jacob Theodore George IV who a Silkroad vendor was named “Digital Link” who pleaded guilty to selling heroin and bath salts on the digital marketplace. Vendor Steven Lloyd Sadler with the name “NOD” was also arrested by Federal agents for selling cocaine and heroin. Both George and Sadler would later corporate with the government and the case against Ross Ulbricht.

bitcoinIn one 2013 study, it was estimated that there were between $30-$45 million in transactions annually through the Silkroad. In the Federal case against Ross Ulbricht it was alleged that there were 3,877 vendors actively doing business on the site. In comparison to the size of the trade volume and the number of vendors, there have been a relatively small numbers of arrests. These arrests also appear to be the result of postal intercepts and other drug investigations, rather than as a result of Silkroad being penetrated by the government.

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US Government To Auction Off $18m Worth Of Bitcoins

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The US government has categorically stated that they are going to auction the Silk Road bitcoins that were seized in connection with civil forfeiture band criminal actions against Ulbricht in the Southern District of New York.

Silkroad Bitcoin

In a press release, the US Marshalls have indicated that the auction will take place during a 12 hour period on 27the of June 2014 and bids are now being accepted by emails from registered bidders. Those who want to bid for the bitcoins are already downloading the auction forms from the US Marshall’s official website in readiness for what will definitely be a big day in the United States.

The big question however remains whether the government is right to action the Silk Road bitcoins now that no conviction has been done yet. Those Silk Road bitcoins have already been ordered forfeited by the United States and Ulbricht charged with narcotic trafficking, money laundering and computer hacking. The most worrying part is that Ulbricht has not been convicted or found guilty of all these crimes at the moment yet the Marshalls are already preparing to go ahead with the auction.

Even though the US Government claims to have concrete evidence against the suspects, a problem is bound to arise should the courts rule in favor of the accused. In such a circumstance, the action by the government to auction the bitcoins before conviction will bring up several issues. It will seem as if the government had already convicted the accused even before the court’s verdict.

Silkroad Bitcoin

This move to auction those Silk Road bitcoins is therefore purely a premature one. The US government advisors should have advised the government to wait for the court ruling on the matter before embarking the auction. This auction is set to be carried out on June 27 and a lot of issue s will for sure arise even after the auction should the accused be found innocent.

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Could Illegal Sites Like Silkroad Be Good For Society?

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This Hidden site Has Been SeizedCertainly Silkroad and other illegal sites are beneficial to the society. Use of contraband drugs has only increased even as various governments have intensified the fight against illegal drugs. People want to get high they will get high no matter what you do but illegalsites like Silkroad provide safety.

Benefits of illegal sites like Silkroad

Reduce violence

While buying drugs on the streets chances of being assaulted or robbed are high. The gangs that sell these drugs also fight among themselves to secure their territories. This never happens online.

Quality drugs provided

In an attempt to make their drugs better or more intoxicating street vendors are susceptible of lacing them with harmful substances, which may be detrimental to the health of the consumer. Sellers on illegal sites like Silkroad sell quality drugs because one bad review may put you out of business immediately.

Affordable prices

Silk Road website

In the streets you do not have the luxury of comparing prices since you are afraid of getting caught .The street vendors know this and thus they sell at exorbitant prices, on online marketplace like Silkroad you can check the prices of all vendors and buy at an affordable price since they are all clamoring for customers.

Chances of being ripped off are lower

Your payment is held in escrow until you confirm you have received the merchandise then the seller gets it. In the streets the chances of being cheated are high.

Decongested prisons

Not many people are arrested selling or buying drugs online since they mostly are anonymous. Physical contact is minimal this leaves our jail cells less congested.


The accessibility of drugs with no fear or little chance of being caught may cause a spike in drug abuse and peddling however, it is a mistake to blame illegal sites like Silkroad for that since they did not introduce them to the society. Furthermore they have ensuredpeople consume uncontaminated drugs and violence has reduced in our streets. Aren’t our streets safer?

Silkroad also sells art, biotic materials, books, collectibles, and digital goods all at competitive prices. It has improved the lives of the poor by making less drug peddlers be around their neighborhoods.

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Bitcoin Exchanges Linked To Silk Road? So the FBI Thinks

Silkroad LogoThe FBI are investigating possible ties between bitcoin exchanges and an online drug market Silk Road, an illegal online market which was closed down by the FBI one year ago. In addition to searching for customer transaction logs from every exchange, both the FBI and prosecutors are investigating whether this exchange as well as others companies may have been involved in the transactions. The investigations have just kicked off and no conclusion has been made as to whether or not these companies were involved in these transactions.

As part of the investigation, the FBI seized a huge cache of Bitcoins, a currency that was used in Silkroad transactions. Authorities say they have managed to seize 144,000 bitcoins, worth $28.5 million at the present exchange rate, making it the largest seizure of that crypto currency to have been seized. The cache is believed to belong to Ross Ulbricht, a founder of the Silk Road. While the FBI did not disclose how they concluded the bitcoins belong to Ross Ulbricht, they were certain they were his.

Silk Road was a notorious online marketplace which allowed drug barons to sell and purchase drugs using bitcoins. Before it was shut down by the authorities, over $1.2 billion worth of trade was conducted on the website exclusively in a virtual currency Bitcoin.

Bitcoin Curency

When the FBI ordered its closure on 2 October 2013, the man allegedly behind it, Ross Ulbricht was arrested and charged for running an illegal business. Authorities claimed they violated money laundering act by allowing their users to purchase drugs and other illegal goods on their website, an offense which carries a sentence of 20 years in jail. Ross was using his laptop in San Francisco at a time of his arrest and authorities were expected to use the laptop for proof he is really the kingpin of Silk Road.

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The Silk Road Dealer “SuperTrips” Busted

Cornelis Jan Slomp, a 22-year-old man from Woerden in Netherlands better known by his alias ‘SuperTrips’ used the Silk Road (an underground website) to deal drugs including LSD, ecstasy and cocaine for millions of dollars’ worth of Bitcoins (virtual currency).

Silkroad jail

The Charge

According to a statement issued by his lawyer and U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon, Slomp pleaded guilty to the single drug trafficking conspiracy he was charged with. He was arrested on August, 2013 after a criminal complaint was filed against him. The prosecutors are seeking forfeiture of all alleged proceeds Slomp made from his crimes which is believed to be worth more than 3 million U.S. Dollars.

The Bust

Slomp was arrested at the Miami International Airport en route to a meeting with his co-conspirators. Prosecutors claim that he was planning to ‘spin-off’ his U.S. Silk Road operations to one of them. The 11 co-conspirators who were based in Europe helped him manufacture, pack and ship illegal drugs which bore a question mark as his trademark. He’s in custody and faces a sentence of between 5 years (mandatory minimum) and 40 years (maximum term) in prison.

Activities Monitored

Slomp made more than 10 000 transactions on the Silk Road from which he received about 385 000 Bitcoins. His operations started on March, 2012 and ran to August, 2013 according to undercover FBI agents who had him under vigilance. On April, 2012 U.S. officials seized mailed drugs that were sent from the Netherlands in an otherwise empty VCD case. This incident happened at the O’Hare International Airport, Chicago and Slomp was identified as the sender. Authorities said that they subsequently nabbed a hundred or more similar shipments.

The Plea

Paul Petruzzi, an attorney from Miami who represents Slomp confirmed that his client intended to plead guilty to the charges. Petruzzi said this decision was made after deliberations between the two. The plea will be filed at the prosecutor’s office.

Silkroad agent

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