Bryan Herrell, the darknet moderator that was paid in Bitcoin for settling disputes on AlphaBay, pleaded guilty to racketeering charges and he is now sentenced to 11 years in prison. In our latest Bitcoin news, we are reading more about the charges.
The Colorado resident, Bryan Herrell, will spend 11 years in prison for his role in AlphaBay after he pleaded guilty in January to racketeering charges. Nine months after entering the guilty plea in the California district court, Herrell, 26, was sentenced to 11 years behind bars for his role as a moderator of AlphaBay according to an announcement by the United States Department of Justice. The dark web marketplace accessible through the Tow web browser was a place where people could buy and sell drugs, weapons, and stolen ID information as well as credit card information.
The website grew incredibly and surpassed the growth of the darknet site Silk Road which saw its final days in 2017 after three years of operation. The law enforcement operation was spread over in three countries but they dismantled the site as with the Canadian police seized the servers in Quebec and the US officials that are looking for the extradition of one of the administrators Alexandre Cazes in the United States. Cazes was found hanging from a tower in Bangkok jail cell.
At the time when the platform crashed, the site had more than 400,000 users and was the first place for purchasing illicit drugs online. The purchases were made in cryptocurrencies such as Monero, Bitcoin, and Ethereum because they offer anonymity. As a moderator on AlphaBay, Bryan Herrell went under the nicknames Botah, or Penissmith settled disputes between vendors on the site according to the DOJ. He also served as a “Scam watcher” and kept from attempts to defraud the users on the platform.
For his services, Herrell was paid in Bitcoin. However, he pleaded guilty to conspiring to engage in the racketeer-influenced organization as the US Prosecutor McGregor Scott said, while the investigations on AlphaBay and its administrators is still ongoing:
“This sentence serves as further proof that criminals cannot hide behind technology to break the law. Operating behind the veil of the darknet may seem to offer shelter from criminal investigations, but people should think twice before ordering or selling drugs online—you will be caught.”
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