While on vacation recently in San Diego I saw a huge yacht parked in San Diego harbor. This one looked weird, with a helicopter and several boats on the deck. A few hours later another yacht pulled into the harbor, dropping anchor many hundred feet away.
Noticed the name on the side of the first ship was Hodor. Well, of course I did a quick check on the ole’ internet and learned it is a support yacht.
Watching news reports sometimes provides a glimpse into worlds far away that I’ll never visit. Such reports give some hint of what that world is like. There are lots of posts on my blog about such worlds. I wrote lots of posts about Silk Road, the on-line drug/ weapon/ body parts/ hacking tools/ contract murder web site.
Article raises the troublesome procedural question that the sentencing judge used allegations that were not proved in court to reach his decision. Specifically, the judge used allegations of the murder-for-hire schemes which were discussed but on which Mr. Ulbrickt was not convicted, according to his attorney’s comments in the appeal.
Apparently there were some warrant-less searches at issue, which the USSC did not take up.
Andrew Michael Jones, Gary Davis, Peter Phillip Nash
7/13/18 – Cyberscoop – Alleged Silk Road employee extradited from Ireland to U.S. – Gary Davis, allegedly a/k/a Libertas, is accused of being a high level administrator in Silk Road. Article links to previously sealed indictment which accused Andrew Michael Jones, a/k/a “Inigo”, Gary Davis, a/k/a “Libertas” and Peter Phillip Nash, allegedly who had four aliases. (Inigo? Seriously? What is the deal with all the slander of the all-time classic comedy Princess Bride?)
While looking at the sentencing of former Secret Service agent Shaun W. Bridges I learned a few more details of what he was up to while looting hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of bitcoins. His sentencing is one of the loose ends on my posts about the Silk Road dark web site where you could buy any drugs, body parts, contract hits, weapons, explosives, or fake identification that your heart desired.
This guy had quite a career. Seriously. He was a successful hostage negotiator before joining Secret Service. He was on the Obama presidential protection detail and was a cyber currency expert while at the USSS.
One more loose end on my reporting of the drug/body parts/contract hit/weapons/fake ID/explosives dark web site Silk Road: sentencing for Shaun W. Bridges.
Update: After getting ready for followup to this post, I realized those are actually separate discussions. Thus, there will be no ‘part 2’ for this post.
He is the former Secret Service agent who, while assigned to the inter-agency task force investigating Silk Road, stole a large amount of bitcoins. He was sentenced to prison for 71 months.
The day before he was scheduled to report to prison he was trying to get out of the U.S. but was arrested for another theft of Bitcoins. He pled guilty and was sentenced to another 24 months, which the judge ordered to run consecutively.
He was also ordered to surrender 1,500 bitcoins, which were worth approximately $10.4 million at the time of his sentencing.
This post will discuss his sentencing. Next post will give some more background on his escapades which paid him a well-earned seven years in free federal housing.
There are only a few loose ends on the massive on-line drug bazaar called Silk Road. Actually, you could buy weapons, human organs, explosives, and even a contract killing on the site along with any amount of any dope you have ever heard of.
Most of the players are in federal prison on long-term sentences.
Last time I checked, the remaining on-the-loose player was “Variety Jones.” He is now in custody, awaiting trial.
The sad tale of Ross Ulbricht and his on-line drug bazaar called Silk Road is a good study of the outer limits of how far rationalization can carry a person.
It is also a frightening illustration of Jeremiah 17:9. From the New International Version, ponder:
The heart is deceitful above all thing and beyond cure. Who can understand it?
Considering the tale of Silk Road is useful for accountants wanting to learn about the outer fringe of the internet and he investigative power of the federal government, believers who would like an illustration of the frightening level of deceit that lives in the human heart, and anyone else wanting to learn more about the dark worlds that normal people will never see.
If you have previously been following the Silk Road story, you will enjoy the book. It reads like a good detective novel, except it is all true.
The book describes the mutual low opinion held of other federal agencies by the staff of most of the federal agencies that had a part in the investigation. This is not the first time I’ve read of those attitudes or heard of poor cooperation across agencies.
Lack of technical discussion
A couple of the reviews at Amazon indicate there is minimal technical detail in the book. That is absolutely the case.