Silk Road Mastermind Appeals Life Sentence

The American jailed for life for masterminding the online criminal enterprise Silk Road, which sold $200 million in drugs across the world, has appealed his sentence, court papers showed Friday.

It was the maximum possible punishment for Ross Ulbricht, who was sentenced to two life terms, and five, 15 and 20 years for hacking, trafficking in false documents and money laundering.

The defense had requested the mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years and not even the government had requested the full life term.

The 31-year-old, from a middle class family and educated at graduate school, filed the appeal at the US federal court in New York on Thursday — a week after his sentencing.

He ran Silk Road under the alias “Dread Pirate Roberts,” amassing $13 million in Bitcoins in commissions by making the purchase of heroin and cocaine as easy as shopping online at eBay or Amazon.

At least six people died as a result of ingesting drugs linked to Silk Road.

Prosecutors said Ulbricht commissioned five murders, although there is no evidence that the killings for hire ever took place.

– Read the entire article at AlterNet.