26-year-old David Trail of Scotland plead guilty to supplying Diazepam and hacking credit card details. In what the Scottish authorities are calling a landmark conviction, the IT specialist was convicted 18 months after his home was raided as part of an international bust on ‘illicit internet traders’ which was coordinated by German, English, and Scottish police, as well as the United States FBI.
Trail was the admin at Topix2, which the courts described as a form of eBay for criminals.
Law enforcement described Trial as reminding them of Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory, and that he had the most advanced computer systems Scottish police had ever seen.
“There is no doubt that the early intervention of law enforcement prevented Trail from pedaling drugs in his serious and organized criminal enterprise. New and traditional policing technique’s assisted in bringing Trail to justice,” Detective Inspector Brian Stuart said.
Scotland police were tipped off to Trail by the FBI, West Hesse Police and the UK’s National Crime Agency. This information identified David Trail as owning and operating a hidden website designed to enable its users to buy and sell drugs anonymously over the Tor Network.
“His targeting of a previous employer overcoming their security almost had a devastating effect on the company’s ability to remain in business. The conviction of Trail should serve as a reminder to those wishing to involve themselves in criminal enterprises on the internet that there is no hiding place,” Detective Inspector Stuart added.
The investigation being in August of 2014. The FBI gave out the IP addresses of visitors of a lot of dark net sites. The narcotics division in Hesse identified Trail as the Admin behind a site hosted in Germany. Scotland police searched Trails home in Watson Crescent on November 6th, 2014. The uncovered his supply of Diazepam, 224 pills, bags, stamps, as well as postal receipts showing he had been mailing packages into Europe as far as Austria.
The raid on Trial was only one of many related to the shutdown of over 400 dark net sites, like Topix2.
Scotweb, Trails former employer, received a lists of stolen credit card data in May of 2014 by an anonymous sender. The incident was not reported to police, and Scotweb was later fined £10,000 by a bank for the data breach. It has cost them thousands more to repair the online security that was breached. The stolen card details were recovered from a hard drive found in Trial’s home during the raid.
He plead guilty to the two charges after he was given a plea agreement. Sentencing for Trail is scheduled for next month.