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Silk Road Founder Convicted Of Facilitating Internet's Largest Black Market

Ross William Ulbricht, 30, founded Silk Road, which became the internet's largest black market. Authorities estimated $1.2 billion in sales were made on the site before it was shut down.

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The founder of black market website Silk Road was found guilty Wednesday of numerous crimes, including money laundering, drug trafficking and hacking.

Ross William Ulbricht, 30, was arrested in October 2013, the site was shut down, and millions of dollars in Bitcoins were seized.

On Wednesday, Ulbricht was convicted of all seven charges against him, Bloomberg reported. He faces life in prison but has yet to be sentenced.

CNBC reported that jurors deliberated for several hours before rendering a verdict.

Before Ulbricht's arrest, law enforcement agents made more than 100 undercover purchases, starting in 2011. Ulbricht was also found guilty of attempting to arrange a killing through the website.

Prosecutors described Ulbricht as a drug kingpin, facilitating the sale of millions of dollars of drugs. His defense argued that the website was an economic experiment, and Ulbricht was fooled into taking the fall for others' crimes.

AP Elizabeth / Williams

In this courtroom drawing, defendant Ross William Ulbricht listens to proceedings from the defense table during opening arguments in his criminal trial in New York, Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015.

Claudia Koerner is a national reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.

Contact Claudia Koerner at

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