A New York jury took about three hours to convict Ross Ulbricht, the San Francisco man linked to the shadowy online marketplace Silk Road, of seven drug and conspiracy counts, NPR and Associated Press report. Prosecutors said the website, known as the eBay of the drugs trade, allowed drug dealers and others to reach a broader base of customers anonymously. The government said drug dealing made up most of Silk Road’s sales during its nearly three years in business, which ended with Ulbricht’s 2013 arrest. Prosecutors discounted defense claims that Ulbricht was framed by others in a murky Internet world.
Prosecutors said Ulbricht enabled more than 1 million drug deals and earned $18 million in bitcoins. Sales of illegal drugs of every type were delivered through the website, representing at least $180 million in sales. Ulbricht was arrested in a San Francisco public library, communicating with a man who unbeknownst to him was a Homeland Security agent. Prosecutors said Ulbricht used the handle “Dread Pirate Roberts,” after a character in The Princess Bride, to communicate online.