A nurse from California has been arrested on charges of selling prescription opioids on various dark websites – such as Silk Road, AlphaBay, and Pandora – in exchange for Bitcoin. Since 2013, Carris Alaine Markis has allegedly sold more than 20,000 prescription pills on the dark web and received Bitcoin in return. Authorities traced Bitcoin transactions to and from these various dark websites to Markis’s various crypto wallets.
Nurses are woefully underpaid, and with access to these types of drugs – including morphine, fentanyl, codeine, and oxycodone – these dark websites combined with Bitcoin posed a great opportunity to make some extra cash on the side. Unfortunately, Bitcoin’s transaction history is completely public, meaning the transactions and missing drugs were rather easy for authorities to link together.
It Started with Silk Road
Silk Road was synonymous with illegal purchases using Bitcoin back in the day, making it a great starting place for Markis to sell stolen pills. On Silk Road, you could buy almost anything your heart desired and all you had to do was send a few Bitcoin in return. Amongst a few other sites, Silk Road tied Bitcoin to the criminal underworld, forever tainting Bitcoin’s image as a criminal’s best friend. However, in the years that followed, Ross Ulbricht was eventually arrested and denied a sentence reduction. Ulbricht – the founder of Silk Road – helped millions of people buy drugs, guns, organs, and other questionable items.
Five Star Farmacy41
From the court papers, it appears that if you were ever looking for a top-notch dealer, Markis was the go-to person. Most of the customer reviews of her dark web marketplace store – Farmacy41 – are four or five stars and are overwhelmingly positive. On Silk Road alone, Markis and Farmacy41 bagged a whopping $232,000 in Bitcoin. On Pandora Markis made 393 sales, earning an incredible $122,000 in Bitcoin in the process. Farmacy41 also recorded sales worth $75,000 in Bitcoin from AlphaBay while it was active. Despite the illegality of the matter, you have to hand it to Markis for keeping her customers happy and maintaining an almost perfect review score across the board.
Scottish Man Lands Himself in Hot Water for Gun Purchase
Across the pond, a man from Edinburgh has gotten himself arrested after spending $2,750 in Bitcoin on the dark web to buy a 9mm handgun, magazine, 150 rounds of ammunition, and a suppressor from the United States. The police intercepted the package and sent the man a fake parcel. They then stormed his house and found the package hidden under the couch. David Mitchell has received five years in jail for the one-time purchase he claimed to be “a purchase out of curiosity.”
The US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) hopes that more criminals use Bitcoin for illegal transactions, as it’s so easy to track – far easier than cash. The DEA are closing a record number of cases thanks to Bitcoin and Markis appears to be the latest victim of this new technology. Markis is still awaiting trial in Sacramento, CA and is looking at a hefty sentence for the colossal amount of drug dealing and thievery she has conducted over the years.