Hugh Haney was arrested on July 18, for trying to launder 19 million worth of bitcoin, according to Homeland Security, he earned these by selling drugs on the largest illegal market on darknet, Silk Road. Now, he’s facing two charges, one of money laundering and one count of engaging financial transaction using illegal resources. If he’ll be plead guilty, he might face up to 30 years in prison.
Homeland security spotted some illegal aktivity after Haney allegedly moved stolen funds to unidentified cryptocurrency. Haney claimed that these large amounts of money, that he was trying to convert to cash, were just proceeds from bitcoin mining, although Homeland Security is saying, that they have evidence, that can trace transactions of the bitcoin, back to Silk Road. Once the bitcoin, which was earned in 2012/2013, was transferred into cash, Homeland Security says that’s when they seized the money.
Silk, back in the day, before being shut down, was one of the most popular darknet markets for selling drugs, illegal (and legal) stuff. It has been shut down in late 2013 and it’s founder Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of conditional release.
According to Chainalysis, there was more than 600 million dollars in bitcoin funneled into the dark web in 2018. Although, the proportion of bitcoin being used for illegal activities against the legal, was almost 7 percent in 2012, it has decreased to a fraction of a percent according to 2018 reasearch. Crime in crypto? Still viable.