A darknet club drug kingpin — who sold the likes of ecstasy, ketamine and generic Xanax in a hard-to-access internet marketplace — will spend eight years behind bars and fork over roughly $2 million worth of Bitcoin in the first such federal forfeiture of its kind in Massachusetts.
“This sentence sends a clear message to Dark Web criminals: the federal government is entering this space. We will find you and you will be held accountable,” said Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Rachael Rollins in a statement. “Thanks to the incredible work of our law enforcement colleagues, there is one less cybercriminal hiding in the shadows.”
Binh Thanh Le, 25, of Brockton, was only 22 years old when he started the “EastSideHigh” storefront on the Wall Street Market illegal marketplace on the darknet. That’s a part of the internet unreachable by standard web searching that requires special software — the Tor, originally called The Onion Router, encrypted and anonymizing internet relay network — to access.
The operation was a rousing success for a while. Le had netted 59 Bitcoins…