Ross Ulbricht, the creator of the famed darknet bazaar Silk Road, recently revealed that he has already served a full decade in prison in a post on the social media platform X.
Ulbricht, who is currently incarcerated for two lifetimes, has generated controversy ever since his 2013 arrest.
On October 2, Ulbricht posted on the social media site X that he had been imprisoned for ten years and that he feared he would spend the rest of his days surrounded by “concrete walls and locked doors.”
Ulbricht gathered support on X, claiming that his punishment wasn’t appropriate for the crime he committed. “The punishment should match the crime,” a user opined, “and the one you were given does not even come close to that.” Another person made the argument that those responsible for more serious crimes have had chances to change their ways.
The case of Ross Ulbricht has received a lot of attention. His release is supported by more than 250 organizations, and 500,000 people have signed an online petition. He has earned support from the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency communities as well. Some have even dubbed him a “Bitcoin political prisoner.”
However, not everybody shares this opinion. Although Ulbricht was not legally charged with these crimes, several users say that allegations of employing hitmen to commit murder played a role in his prosecution. Additionally, other users have emphasized the Silk Road’s drawbacks, claiming that it enabled criminal activities like sex trafficking and the sale of illegal drugs.
Comparisons to the penalties handed down to other people connected to the Silk Road have heightened the debate around the Ulbricht case. Ulbricht’s supporters point out that the typical sentence for those involved is roughly six years. The leading drug dealer was imprisoned for seven years before being let go. In addition, the Silk Road 2.0 creators spent little to no time in jail and are now free.
In 2011, Silk Road launched as a ground-breaking darknet marketplace where people could use Bitcoin as their primary form of payment to acquire and sell illegal items and services. Under the alias “Dread Pirate Roberts,” Ulbricht ran the platform from his laptop. It attracted notice right away as the first contemporary darknet bazaar.
On October 1, 2013, the American FBI took Ulbricht’s laptop, putting an end to his authority over the Silk Road. He was subsequently found guilty in 2015 in a U.S. federal court on several offenses relating to the running of the marketplace and given two life terms plus forty years in prison with no chance of release.
According to court records, Silk Road facilitated the sale of 9,519,664 Bitcoin between February 2011 and July 2013, earning profits totaling 600,000 Bitcoin, which, at the time of publication, roughly equated to $1.2 billion in sales and $80 million in commissions.