Ross William Ulbricht was a former drug trafficker and darknet market operator, Ross is best known for creating and running the Silk Road website from 2011 until his arrest in 2013. His net worth was 28.6 million dollars at the time of his arrest. He was convicted of drug trafficking, money laundering, computer hacking.
He viewed laws against drugs as“coercion”(government force that stops people from living the way they want.) So he created a website called Silk Road. the Silk Road let people buy and sell contraband mostly drugs using bitcoin(a online currency). The site became successful quickly. It soon carried a billion dollars in transactions. The website was private and didn’t use US currency so “The State is unable to get its thieving murderous mitts on it.”But he was wrong. Ulbricht slipped up, using his real name in an internet forum, and the FBI found him and put him in jail.
A jury, looking at his former website, convicted him of things like”conspiracy to traffic narcotics.”He was clearly guilty of that. But then Judge Katherine Forrest said that because “Silk Road was a black market of unprecedented scope”she would sentence Ulbricht to”double life plus 40 years, without parole.”That’s a longer sentence than many murderers get.
Give me a break. Locking some people up forever will not stop sales of drugs. Americans should have learned that from our last attempt…Prohibition. Making popular things illegal rarely diminishes their use. People still buy the banned items, but now they buy them from criminals. Violence increases. Sellers, instead of resolving disputes in courts, settle them with violence.
The illegal activity doesn’t go away. It just becomes more dangerous. What we saw during alcohol prohibition, we now see in the drug market. What did government accomplish by closing Silk Road? Nothing . Other illegal sites opened. Today, they offer more contraband than Silk Road ever did. Silk Road had 12,000 listings. Now several sites carry more than 100,000 listings.