‘Railroaded’ debuts marking Ross Ulbricht’s 5 years behind bars

The alleged founder of dark web marketplace Silk Road has marked five years in prison, after being handed a double life sentence with no chance of parole.

Ross Ulbricht began his sentence on October 1, 2013, after being charged with a litany of offences relating to the marketplace, which was predominantly used for illegal transactions, including alleged drug trafficking on an industrial scale.

The marketplace, which was predominantly powered by BTC transactions, was taken down by authorities in the same month, the first of several similar markets to have been tackled by the FBI and other law enforcement authorities.

FreeRoss.org, a campaign group led by Ulbricht’s family and supporters, have launched a new project to raise awareness of the case. “Railroaded” is a six-part series that seeks “to accurately present the available evidence surrounding the creation, investigation and shutdown of Silk Road, and the prosecution of Ross Ulbricht.”

On the website, the group stated, “October 1 marks five years that Ross has been imprisoned…On this unhappy anniversary, we’re launching a new project revealing many surprising details about Ross’ case, unknown to most people. You can read or listen to the first episode now. There are six weekly episodes that will take you through the labyrinthine maze of this outrageous case, so stay tuned.”

A spokesperson from the group said Ross’s sentence was disproportionate, particularly in light of his personal character.

“Although five years in prison would harden many, it is not true of Ross. Throughout his long ordeal he has remained a positive force and is liked by inmates, guards and prison staff alike. True to his values of peace and non-violence, Ross recently refused to take part in an assault on another inmate,” according to the group. “This defiance made him a target and he was put in solitary protective custody, where he is today. He could have avoided this hardship but wasn’t willing to hurt someone else. Yet the judge ruled that Ross was so dangerous that she condemned him to die in prison.”

Ulbricht’s case was appealed as far as the U.S. Supreme Court, which ultimately rejected his petition. Family and supporters have since raised a petition, securing over 85,000 signatures calling for President Trump to extend clemency to Ross in the circumstances.

As of today, Ulbricht remains in prison, as he begins the sixth year of his double life term.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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French agent accused of peddling state secrets on dark web for crypto

A security officer in France is accused of selling confidential state information on the dark net, according to local media reports.

On Friday, French news outlet Le Parisien described the officer as a member of a sensitive division of the Direction Générale de la Sécurité Intérieure (DGSI). The agent allegedly minted information to which he had access to, as well as potentially falsified administrative documents, which he sold on the dark web.

Sources close to the investigation told the news outlet there was evidence that the agent had been in contact with members of the organized crime world as well as “specialists of the economic intelligence” who were interested in obtaining such data. No link to terrorism has been found, according to the report.

Agents from the Central Directorate of the Judicial Police were the first to discover the leaks. This prompted the DGSI to use the agent’s personal code—which they use to connect to computers and perform consultations—to track his online activities. Internal security processes allow the authorities to trace the origin of file queries either in real time or in delayed manner.

Following the agent’s arrest, L’Office central pour la répression de l’immigration irrégulière et de l’emploi d’étrangers sans titre (Ocriest)—the agency in charge of monitoring “irregular immigration”—shut down the criminal network the suspect had been linked to, according to Le Monde.

It is not yet known how much information was sold or how much crypto the agent received. Data considered classified as “confidential defense” or “secret defense” within the DGSI, are punishable by up to seven years’ imprisonment and a fine of €100,000 ($115,393) if violated by any state agent.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BCH is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.

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