An Australian citizen has confessed to money laundering and drug trafficking in the federal court in Manhattan.
Peter Phillip Nash, 41, from Queensland, Australia, was arrested in Brisbane in December 2013 and transported to the US last November. The nicknames that he used on the Silk Road website were Samesamebutdifferent, Batman73, Symmetry and Anonymousasshit. He earned $30,000 for 10 months of work as a primary moderator, which he used to buy drugs, according to Reuters.
Nash revealed that he had first established the connection with the website to buy drugs for friends. Later, he allegedly accepted the offer to moderate the Silk Road chat forum. Nash said he did not know the identity of the website’s operator Ross Ulbricht, who apparently proposed this to him.
"I deeply regret my conduct and any consequent harm I caused," he said.
Nash will face sentencing on May 26th, 2015. The maximum penalty for drug trafficking is life in prison, with a minimum of 20 years for a kilogram of heroin and 10 years for 5 kg of cocaine. Nash’s indictment mentions “hundreds” of kilograms of narcotics.
In February 2015, Ross Ulbricht was found guilty on 7 charges, including money laundering, drug traffic, and computer hacking, under the pseudonym of Dread Pirate Roberts, the leader of the Silk Road website.
Another alleged Silk Road staff member Andrew Jones pleaded guilty on October 2nd, 2014 and will be sentenced later this year. Gary Davis, who was also allegedly involved with the website, is now awaiting extradition from Ireland.
CoinFox reported earlier this week that the Australian police have tracked down and arrested in Melbourne Richard Pollard, an Australian drug dealer who operated on the Silk Road black market. The drug dealer pleaded guilty to drug trafficking and was sentenced to 11 years in prison. The Asset Confiscation Operations confiscated 24,500 bitcoins from him and are now waiting for the right moment to sell the digital currency.