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Silk Road Vendor NOD Sentenced To 5 Years In Prison

As it was published in a press release by Justive.gov:

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Top Seller on Silk Road Used Screen Name “Nod”

A 40-year-old Bellevue, Washington man who was a prolific drug dealer on the online marketplace “Silk Road,” was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to five years in prison and four years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.  STEVEN SADLER sold nearly a million dollars’ worth of cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine to people who ordered over the internet via the Silk Road site.  He shipped the drugs through the mail.  At sentencing U.S. District Judge Ricardo S. Martinez said he is “troubled by this new method, new frontier of drug dealing that is creating a new crop of victims.”

“This defendant thought he could use the internet to spread the poison of illegal drugs far and wide,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.  “We will not allow internet connectivity to be blatantly misused to harm public safety.  Moreover, as this and other prosecutions demonstrate, attempts to hide in the “dark net” will not succeed.”

According to records in the case, SADLER, under the screen name NOD, began selling illegal drugs on Silk Road in 2012.  The internet site was dubbed an anonymous marketplace, where the majority of the business was the sale of illegal drugs.  SADLER was selling as much as $70,000 worth of cocaine each month as a dealer on the internet site.  When police searched his apartment on July 31, 2013, they found more than a kilogram of cocaine and heroin each, as well as 400 grams of methamphetamine.  They also found a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol hidden under the mattress in his bedroom.  SADLER is also forfeiting a 2007 BMW 525 and $4,200 cash seized the day the search warrants were served.

“Sadler transformed himself into one of the top Silk Road drug distributors and profited from the destruction of untold lives,” said Brad Bench, special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Seattle.  “Criminals who operate digital black markets and those who trade their illicit goods on them believe they are above the law.  They are mistaken.  HSI and its partners are dedicating considerable resources to infiltrating and dismantling underground Internet sites such as the former Silk Road.”

The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Woods.

He’s Plea deal:

Judgement:

7 comments

  1. The article left out the most important part… How did this guy get caught? What was his mistake that led to his capture and identification?

    • WellThen1313

      He probably sent an unencrypted email in his business, or someone requested that they meet somewhere, and it so happened to be the cops.

    • You can read the details in Nod’s indictment; although, there isn’t much there. Basically, he bought a 9-gram “sample” of meth from hammertime, who was already being scrutinized, when he was first entering that market and wanted to see how his crystal stacked up against other top vendors’ product. This sample was intercepted when it was delivered to his P.O. Box because LEO was privy to everything that HT did. The rest is history. HT’s indictment is even more interesting–it lists dates that packages went out, plus their contents and the names/addresses of their recipients. These were long-term investigations and employed the “dominoe effect.” It’s worth mentioning that “Nod” continued to vend after 7/31/13, right up until the seizure of SR1. When you place an order and send you PGP-encrypted address to a “trusted” vendor, there’s a fair chance that it’s going straight into the hands of the Feds.

  2. Can’t hear these BS commonplace phrases from officials about illegal drugs anymore (poison, victims, harm of public safety, etc.)

    After all, a lot of illegal drugs aren’t toxic at all (as opposed legal drugs Alcohol and Tobacco for example) and so the poison argument is nothing more than a lying generalisation. Not to forget that drugs get cut thanks to illegality. During alcohol prohibition booze got cut out of profit maximization like illegal drugs today which led to countless “victim” deaths all the same.

    Also, people have to pay extremely expensive prices for those cut drugs, again thanks to illegalization. Addiction to legal drugs like Alcohol and Tobacco at least doesn’t lead to people being financially crippled after a short amount of time. Again, this is also the fault of the infamous “War On Drugs”.

    And imo vendors like NOD (before becoming FBI informant that is) make drug use at least a bit more safe and transparent. The use of their products is still expensive (after all 90% of the price one pays for most illegal drugs is a compensation for the risks the vendors/smugglers etc. have to take) but at least in DNMs users are safe from dangerous street corners and have ways to compare the quality of products.

    If those officials, attorneys, judges, etc. had at least a bit of a clue, they’d know the War On Drugs produces a lot more victims than the use of (clean) illegal drugs ever could. But probably they don’t even want to know. It’s just so easy to make politics with a harsh stance on those bad, evil drugs/dealers our children need protection from. Parents like it, conservatives like it and people with no clue about the issue (= the majority) like it.

    Honest depictions of the catastrophic results of the worldwide drug prohibition are rare (at least in some places people are starting to wake up though), like the statements of all those clueless officers of the court show, it’s nearly always this black and white, good vs. evil crap.

    Maybe these people should watch a few episodes of The Wire to see what an useless, expensive, life destroying war they’re fighting. Or at least take a look at the website from Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (I think it’s not allowed to post links here). Although I doubt anything could break their silly prejudices.

    Man, hopefully one day people will wake up and stop swallowing all those loads of BS.

    • thelibertytogetfuckedup

      I was thinking the same thing about the ridiculous terminology. Ok, we get it..you’re a super law-abiding citizen that doesn’t do drugs and is obviously against them. What the fuck do you care if I use a drug that only harms me?
      This jackass probably drinks a 66er of whisky and smokes two packs a day. “Oh no but I don’t do “drugs”

  3. @Ummmm

    Try to do a little research, please. Even a brief search will yield you a ton of links, e.g.:

    dailydot.com/crime/nod-silk-road-informant-steve-sadler/

  4. I believe NOD was caught by good old fashion gumshoe police work, not cyber screw ups, just drawing too much attention at the post office and going to many MANY post offices in one day. I read before that they put a tracker on his car and tracked him to something like 12 post offices in 1 day! This guy was moving a ton of packages! Probably mailing out 30-50 packages a day sometimes more! Before I heard about these markets, I kept hearing how the post office was struggling, people were being laid off and offices were closing, thanks to people like NOD a few postal workers get to keep their jobs!

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