Silk Road And Ross Ulbricht, The Trial Continues

One thing, which can be certain within the bitcoin world, is that some events are so extraordinary that they seem like fiction. An event, which you may or may not have been following these last couple of years, is the case of Silk Road and Ross Ulbricht.

The Silk Road was a notorious underground (or rather, dark web, the cyber version of ‘underground’) website that had ‘morals’, of a sort. No weapons, no contracts for Hitmen, no illicit pictures/pornography, no stolen credit cards or bank details. Mostly drugs, some forgeries, and a variety of legal goods, such as books, cigarettes, erotica, jewelry, art.

Ross Ulbricht lived a frugal life, allegedly operated a site that reduced street crime and violence, and introduced consumers to merchants who seemed to care a lot more about their customers. Often giving advice and guidelines how to take their drugs, and on how to know your limits.

hitmenIt beggars the question why the US Federal state despised him so. In so much that they set him up to create a fake murder charge to plant on him. They (the Fed) had the target already arrested, then apparently let the information purposefully leak. Then had the proposed ‘hitman’ (an undercover Federal agent), lined up ready for Ross to hire (this charge has since been dropped).

How dubious does this make his case? On this alone the entire case against him is suspect and tainted (noble cause corruption).

Ross still holds to his claim that he is not the Dread Pirate Roberts that they are truly after, that he passed that title on soon after he created the Silk Road.

And only just last week, it was revealed that the Special Agent (Jared Der-Yeghiayan) who worked undercover on the Silk Road as an admin (Cirrus), had always suspected Mark Karpeles (former CEO of MtGox) as the real Dread Pirate Roberts (or rather, the DPR at the time of the investigation).

It turns out that Mark Karpeles had been in contact with law enforcement and could have possibly set up Ross, pulling him back into Silk Road, to be the fall guy, allegedly.

I can only feel defense attorney Joshua Dratel [is] trying everything he can to point the attention away from his client, ~ said Mark Karpeles in his statement to the media.

The strong reaction, reported by those in attendance, of the prosecution, seems extensive. “Objection! Objection!” sounded at every mention of Karpeles name from Der-Yeghiayan. One might almost be led to wonder why there is such strong objection to this reasonable doubt in the case. Surely justice is more important than just finding a fall guy?

You would think that the evidence, for the prosecution or defense, should be available when it comes to a serious case such as this. Justice should not be a case of excluding evidence that might show a defendant as not guilty. Such a thing makes a mockery of justice.

Prosecutors Don’t Want A Jury To See My Interview With Silk Road’s Dread Pirate Roberts ~ Andy Greenberg, Wired.

And the prosecution has just filed to the Hon. Katherine B. Forrest, Re: United States v. Ross William Ulbricht. Telling Judge Forrest, numerous times throughout the document, how to do her job, and vehemently instructing her that any mention of Karpeles should be struck from the record and discounted in the trial. If they are so sure that Karpeles is not DPR, and it is Ross, what are they afraid of?

Throughout document 154 the prosecution state hearsay from Federal Agent (Der-Yeghiayan) should not be listened too. Regardless that he was the Special Agent, who was the Silk Road Admin, thus basically, lead point for the entire investigation (hearsay is talk that cannot be backed up by evidence). The evidence of the Wired interview (see Andy Greenberg, above), is not to be allowed, and  document 154 instructs (not asks) Judge Forrest not to allow anymore mention of Karpeles.

So Der-Yeghiayan’s words will be hearsay, and remain hearsay, as any evidence that could prove it otherwise is excluded or being asked to be excluded.

Surely the evidence in a case this serious should be included? Especially when it might mean an innocent man was going to jail for the rest of his foreseeable life.

For the reasons above, the Government respectfully requests that the Court: (1) strike any testimony elicited from SA Der-Yeghiayan concerning his beliefs about Mark Karpeles and  preclude the defense from pursuing such questioning further; (2) preclude the defense from questioning SA Der-Yeghiayan concerning his understanding of Mr. Karpeles’ offer to provide information concerning Silk Road to law enforcement authorities; and (3) carefully evaluate under Rule 403 any evidence the defense seeks to offer concerning Mr. Karpeles other than agent  belief and hearsay. ~ Case 1:14-cr-00068-KBF Document 154 Filed 01/19/15, Page 13.

Is this a witch hunt or justice?

Disclaimer: Any views or opinions represented in this article are that of the author, not CCN.

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About the author

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Joel Dalais

Joel loves Bitcoin and Digital Currency. He holds a BSc (hons) in Criminology with Criminal Justice Studies and Sociology, contributes for Bitcoin Magazine, is an Ambassador for Coloured Coins, Software tester and Advises for GreenCoinX and MultiSigX, and is Director of IBWT ("In Bitcoin We Trust"), a Digital Currency Exchange.

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