A jury found Ulbricht guilty in February on all seven counts with which he was charged, such as running a narcotics-trafficking enterprise, money laundering and computer hacking.
Ulbricht wrote a letter to Judge Katherine Forrest asking her to “leave a light at the end of the tunnel” in sentencing and to “leave me my old age.”
She did not.
Instead, Ulbricht received the harshest sentence possible, including a 20 year life sentence, one for five years, one for 15 years and two for life, all served concurrently and without the possibility of parole. Forrest said that Ulbricht’s privilege did not earn him a lenient sentence. And so the 31-year-old will pay the ultimate price if appeals fail.
Ulbricht currently has an ongoing case in which he is accused of trying to arrange a murder-for-hire, which is still pending in a Maryland court.
People following the case were shocked to learn that two of the FBI officers investigating Silk Road were to be charged with corruption and money laundering due to their actions during the investigation of Silk Road and Ross Ulbricht. This would serve as “one of the key issues we raise on appeal.”
The case has ignited the interest of people all over the world, with celebrities such as Russell Brand commenting on the case, concluding that Ross Ulbricht has nothing to do with anything at all.
Publications from all over the world have followed the case, with virtually every mainstream outlet covering the trial and writing on the Silk Road. The trial brought the controversial Tor Network into question, with people arguing both for its merits and against it.
“The idea,” he wrote in his journal, “was to create a website where people could buy anything anonymously, with no trail whatsoever that could lead back to them.”
“Silk Road is about something much bigger than thumbing your nose at the man … It’s about taking back our liberty and our dignity and demanding justice.”
“Do it for me, do it for yourself, do it for your families and friends, and do it for mankind.”