Silk Road 2.0 Dark Web mastermind revealed as university dropout
(Source: telegraph.co.uk)

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(Original link: telegraph.co.uk)

Silk Road 2.0 Dark Web mastermind revealed as university dropout Save National Crime Agency
A n unemployed university drop-out has been revealed as the mastermind behind the notorious dark web marketplace Silk Road 2.0.
Thomas White, 24, took over the running of the website after its predecessor was closed down by the FBI in 2013.
White, who left his accounting degree at Liverpool John Moores University after a single term, was acting as an administrator of the Silk Road when it was taken down by the authorities.
But within a month of its shutdown he launched Silk Road 2.0. which like the original site used to technology to allow users to anonymously buy and sell illegal items using bitcoin currency.
As well as drugs, the website acted as a marketplace for child abuse images, firearm, computer hacking tools and other illicit items.
White’s dark web site specialised in supplying class A and B drugs, as well as legal highs.
It is not clear how much money White made but more than £75 million worth of goods were traded on the site before it was shutdown and he was making between one and five percent commission on each sale.
Despite having no legitimate income, White paid £10,700 up front to rent a plush apartment on Liverpool’s city waterfront. Thomas White ran his criminal enterprise from his flat in Liverpool
W hen officers from the National Crime Agency raided White's flat they discovered a laptop under his bed, which contained 464 images of child abuse.
W hite had told another Silk Road administrator that he wanted to set up a paedophiles’ website “because there is money to be made from these people.”
A vast amount of encrypted material was discovered on White's computers.
It contained data hacked from the FBI, Nasa, the FBI, users' details from Ashley Madison, a website billed as enabling extramarital affairs.
It is not believed White hacked the data himself.
White, who used aliases ‘St Evo’ and ‘Dread Pirate Roberts’, ran Silk Road 2.0 from November 2013 to March 2014.
He was arrested at his flat in November 2014 and at the same time the FBI raided the US operation.
He was rearrested as the NCA investigation progressed in early 2017. White used the Silk Road 2.0 to sell illegal drugs
W hite was self-taught at computers – which he spent £35,000 on – and he spent his days staying up late gaming.
He was believed to own 50 bitcoins, which investigators seized, with a current value of around £192,000.
The NCA identified White by tracking parcels of drugs he ordered through the original Silk Road website.
Last month he pleaded guilty to drug trafficking, money laundering and making 464 category A indecent images of children.
He was sentenced to five years and four months after appearing at Liverpool Crown Court.
I an Glover from the National Crime Agency said: “Thomas White and his online associates believed they could use the dark web to anonymously commit crimes with impunity.
“But this case shows that those who try to hide behind the apparent security of anonymising software will be identified and brought to justice.
“White was a well-regarded member of the original Silk Road hierarchy. He used this to his advantage when the site was closed down. We believe he profited significantly from his crimes which will now be subject to a proceeds of crime investigation.
“Close working with American partners in the FBI, Homeland Security and the Department of Justice has resulted in the take down of global illegal drug empires and the targeting of associated money laundering, primarily involving crypto-currencies."...