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Published: 2015-02-04 18:56:14

In a landmark case for the digital age, Ross Ulbricht, the alleged founder of the Silk Road online marketplace, was found guilty on multiple charges related to drug trafficking, money laundering, and computer hacking.

The Silk Road, which operated on the dark web, was notorious for facilitating the sale of illegal drugs, firearms, and other illicit goods and services. The trial has been widely watched as a test of the government’s ability to police the dark web, which is known for its anonymity and lack of regulation.

Ulbricht, who had used the pseudonym “Dread Pirate Roberts” on the site, was arrested in 2013 in San Francisco and charged with running the Silk Road. During the trial, prosecutors presented evidence that Ulbricht had created the site and managed it until his arrest. They also presented evidence that he had ordered the murder of several people who had threatened to expose his identity.

The defense argued that Ulbricht had created the site as an experiment in libertarian economics and had handed it over to others who had run it without his knowledge. They also argued that the evidence presented by the prosecution was circumstantial and that Ulbricht was not the person behind the “Dread Pirate Roberts” pseudonym.

However, the jury ultimately found Ulbricht guilty on all counts, and he now faces life in prison. The verdict has been hailed as a victory for law enforcement and a warning to others who may seek to use the dark web for illegal purposes.

“This verdict sends a clear message that those who seek to hide behind the anonymity of the dark web will be brought to justice,” said Preet Bharara, the US attorney for the Southern District of New York.

The case has also raised questions about the role of encryption and anonymity in the digital age, and the balance between individual privacy and the need for law enforcement to investigate crimes.

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