Details emerge of alleged Silk Road operator’s murder-for-hire plots 

click to enlarge Ross William Ulbricht
  • Ross William Ulbricht
The San Francisco man charged with running a billion-dollar online drug market known as Silk Road allegedly showed little remorse after paying $80,000 to have a hit man kill a former employee of the website, according to a federal indictment.

The February hit reportedly never happened because 29-year-old Ross William Ulbricht unwittingly hired an undercover FBI agent.

However, details revealed in a federal indictment in Maryland suggest that Ulbricht wasn’t about to lose sleep over the dead employee, who he had feared would “give up info.” The identity of the FBI agent was not revealed, thus Ulbricht was reportedly under the assumption the hit took place.

“I’m pissed I had to kill him...but what’s done is done...I just wish more people had some integrity,” Ulbricht allegedly wrote to the agent after the agent sent him staged photos of a tortured and murdered victim.

Initially, the indictment alleges, Ulbricht told the agent to beat up the employee, but changed his mind, saying he “never killed a man or had one killed before, but it is the right move in this case.”

It wasn’t the only time Ulbricht would hire someone to kill for the good of Silk Road, which offered illegal services as well as drugs, the indictment said.

In March, Ulbricht reportedly solicited a Silk Road user to carry out a $150,000 murder-for-hire of a Canadian drug dealer. The dealer had reportedly threatened to release the identities of thousands of other sellers and buyers on the website unless Ulbricht forked over $500,000.

In the end, it wasn’t a former employee that brought down Silk Road, but Ulbricht himself, authorities said.

The 29-year-old was arrested Tuesday at the Glen Park Branch Library after investigators apparently linked his personal email address to the website.

— Staff, wire report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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