Rather than round up a series of stories from the deep web, this week we're focusing on just the one. The tale, concerning Silk Road's most enduring mystery, is so labyrinthine it warrants recounting in full.
'Redandwhite' Indicted in Black and White
Silk Road is a saga that just won't end. Every few months, a new prosecution or a trove of freshly discovered clues adds further intrigue to the deep web's most notorious drugs marketplace. Despite the conviction of Ross Ulbricht in 2015, there remains a number of questions concerning his stewardship of Silk Road. One of the most puzzling pertains to the murder for hire allegations made against Ross Ulbricht. Ulbricht was never charged or convicted for these at trial and evidence shows that no assassinations were ever carried out. The arrest of James Ellingson, 42, by Canadian authorities last month, however, has shed some light on the matter.
According to prosecutors, Dread Pirate Roberts (DPR), the handle for the lead admin of Silk Road, was duped and defrauded multiple times by Ellingson, who operated under several pseudonyms on the Silk Road marketplace. While numerous opsec errors Ulbricht allegedly made would likely have led to his arrest anyway, Ellingson, or 'redandwhite' to use one of his personas, played a pivotal role in the government's unproven allegations, helping to consign Ulbricht to life behind bars and ruining Silk Road for the thousands of buyers and sellers who had conducted business with minimal friction up until then.