Deep Web underground drug market Atlantis abruptly shut down service late last month and now it’s the end of the road for the site that started it all: Silk Road. The FBI was finally able to determine who was behind the Silk Road, obtain a seizure warrant and shut the site down.
Authorities have arrested 29-year-old Ross Ulbricht in San Francisco, the man believed to be behind the site. A copy of the complaint filed in the Southern District of New York charged Ulbricht with narcotics trafficking conspiracy, computer hacking conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy.
It also mentions that Dread Pirate Roberts once ordered a murder of someone who was trying to blackmail him. The parties allegedly agreed on a price of $150,000 and the job was said to be done although the FBI could find no evidence of a related homicide. As such, he isn’t being charged with murder.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Ulbricht – who allegedly went by the online handle Dread Pirate Roberts – studied physics in college and worked as a research scientist for five years. He was active on social media sites including Facebook, Google+, Stack Overflow and YouTube which is interesting considering how cautions Dread Pirate Roberts reportedly was in covering his tracks and those of Silk Road users.
The complaint claims the site has done $1.2 billion worth of business between February 2011 and July 2013 which netted Ulbricht nearly $80 million in commission based on current Bitcoin rates. During the same time period, the site had 957,079 registered users that conducted 1.2 million transactions.