Eleven years in prison for administrator of the underground internet market

The 26-year-old American mediated disputes between buyers and sellers on AlphaBay and scoured the marketplace for scammers. The man used the pseudonyms Penissmith and Botah and was paid in bitcoins for his work.

AlphaBay was on the dark web, the protected part of the internet. Users could trade in weapons, drugs and stolen personal data. The market was shut down in 2017.

On July 5 of that year, Thai police raided the Bangkok home of the founder, a 26-year-old Canadian. At the time, he had his laptop open unencrypted, so that detectives were given passwords for the site and the servers. A few days later, the Canadian committed suicide in his cell.

Silkroad and Hansa Market

AlphaBay was for many criminals the successor to the Silk Road trading site, which was shut down by the United States in 2013.

A short time later, the Dutch police took over the large criminal marketplace Hansa Market. Several people were later sentenced to years in prison for selling drugs through Hansa Market.


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