Andy Greenberg reports: Silk Road, for its more than two and a half years online, was an unprecedented online narcotics emporium. But according to a journal found on the laptop of its alleged creator Ross Ulbricht, Ulbricht wanted it to be even more: a “brand” that extended from communications tools to banking.
In Ulbricht’s trial Wednesday, prosecutor Timothy Howard read aloud from a journal that was found on the defendant’s Samsung 700z laptop, which was seized at the time of his arrest in a San Francisco library in October, 2013. The journal, which goes back at least as far as 2010, seems to provide the most detailed look yet at Ulbricht’s plans for his libertarian contraband market. And the journal reveals that before his arrest, Ulbricht had allegedly planned to create chat software, a currency exchange, and more, all under the “Silk Road brand.”
The young Texan had allegedly planned to expand the Silk Road into a “brand people can come to trust and rely on,” according to a 2011 passage from the journal. “Silk Road chat, Silk Road exchange, Silk Road credit union, Silk Road market, Silk Road everything!” [Continue reading…]