Two and a half years ago, an underground website called Silk Road opened allowing the anonymous purchase of illicit substances including heroin, cocaine, and a variety of other drugs.
The Washington Post reported on October 2nd that the alleged owner and operator of the site, Ross Ulbrecht, was arrested at a public library in San Francisco. The Silk Road site was subsequently seized and shut down. A criminal complaint against Ulbricht includes narcotics trafficking, computer hacking, and money laundering.
Silk Road is estimated to have brokered business in upwards of $1 billion in the short time it was in operation. The site utilized a virtual currency known as Bitcoin to process transactions, making them difficult to trace. Ulbrecht also faces charges in a failed murder-for-hire plan in the state of Maryland.
“Websites like Silk Road cater to the destructive choices of individuals who continue to struggle with addiction,” said Pax Prentiss, CEO of Passages Addiction Treatment Centers. “Given the opportunity, people who are unable to cope with their unresolved underlying conditions will often seek ways to numb their emotional pain using whatever means are available to them. Our efforts at Passages have shown that if you are truly ready to get to the root causes of your addiction and heal that emotional pain, the holistic program of treatment methods we offer has shown very effective results.”