A 37-year-old, also known as “Willy”, from Groningen, the Netherlands, was arrested for allegedly running a vendor shop on the infamous Silk Road Marketplace selling narcotics. Earlier this month, the Public Prosecutor (OM) recommended a sentence of fifteen months (five suspended) in prison. However, there is an update in the case.
According to official court information, the suspect allegedly used his own room at a residential building in Oude Boteringestraat in Groningen as his base of operations. After several anonymous reports, law enforcement authorities raided the home of the 37-year-old. Police found different kinds of narcotics, including “hard drugs” and ecstasy pills. Officials claim the amount of drugs found in the apartment is too much for a regular user. They suspect Willy of running the “Amster Dope” vendor shop on the previously closed Silk Road Marketplace.
The Dutch OM considered the case as a “modern sale of narcotics”. Prosecution stated there is a big difference between street deals and dark net trade since the seller is “not disturbed by junkies”.
After his detention, the defendant denied all charges against him. However, he admitted that he was active on the dark web.
“I was fascinated by what was happening there. I jogged a little,” the suspect said.
Mathieu van Linde, defending the 37-year-old, said that there are suspicions, however, there is no concrete evidence to support these. He also added that the amount of drugs found in his client’s home is not enough to indicate trafficking. However, the prosecution is determined that Willy was the one behind the Amster Dope vendor shop. According to the prosecutor, who took an advanced course on dark web trade, there are plenty of evidence indicating the 37-year-old was trading narcotics on the dark net.
“11 percent of the drugs that is offered worldwide on the dark web comes from the Netherlands. And this suspect is an example of a trader who is active,” the prosecutor said.
According to official court information, Amster Dope was active on the Silk Road Marketplace. The vendor had over 300 transactions, a positive feedback rate of 97.8 percent, and 758 “fans” on the website. The cocaine sold by the seller was the “very best” on the Silk Road Marketplace, the prosecution stated. The parcels were shipped in two to four days, always packaged discreetly.
According to the investigation, police found a list in the defendant’s room with the name of specific narcotics, and “considerable sums of money”. Additionally, law enforcement authorities also found a guide, providing information on how to set up an anonymous company in the Channel Islands. A fake id was also found in the room, with the name “Hugo” instead of Willy. Police discovered a mini studio in the apartment set up for taking pictures. In the studio, pills and powders were found, in addition to an “Amster Dope” logo. Finally, officials seized 3,500 euros of cash, and a list containing “codes”, which, according to the prosecutor, are bitcoin addresses.
A verdict in the case is expected in February.
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