An unemployed university dropout who set up a Silk Road deep web site (marketplace) to sell drugs and child sexual abuse images has been jailed.
Thomas White launched Silk Road 2.0 less than a month after the FBI closed the original site in 2013.
In March, a 24-year-old man confessed to drug dealing, money laundering and creating 464 indecent images of children.
He was the administrator of the Silk Road 2.0 deep web site, which allowed users to buy and sell drugs and computer hacking tools with a degree of anonymity.
White’s site specialized in supplying Class A and B drugs, as well as legal drugs when he ran it from November 2013 to March 2014.
What is the Silk Road?
The Silk Road website gets its name from historic trade routes spanning Europe, Asia and parts of Africa.
He became famous for his media reports and online chat. But users could only access the site through Tor, a system that obfuscates who visits the site and from which country (deep web).
Tor was created by the US government to provide anonymity for activists. It is now being used for a variety of purposes, including disguising illegal transactions.
Illegal drugs like heroin could be bought on the Silk Road using the hard-to-trace Bitcoin cryptocurrency. The site also featured burglary equipment and stolen passports for sale.
A huge amount of encrypted data was found on his computers, including copies of information stolen from the FBI, NASA, Ashley Madison’s extramarital affairs website and British Internet service provider TalkTalk.