DeepDotWeb, a comparison search system and news site about dark web markets have been seized by the FBI for allegedly being involved in money laundering. The police of five countries arrested the alleged operators, including two Israelis and moderators in France, Germany, and the Netherlands.
As disclosed on Tuesday, the encapturing was part of a sweeping international raid that also entailed taking down the .com and .onion sites, replacing them with notices of seizure. The said websites gained traction from the black market when the prominence of the larger dark web sites like Silk Road was disintegrated by the government crackdowns.
DeepDotWeb was known to offer a number of services including cryptocurrency news related to privacy and dark web selling. Moreover, the site had been also enlisted in the dark web markets for buying and selling cryptocurrency. A report from TechCrunch states that the site’s alleged administrator has been arrested by the police in Brazil.
What other charges the suspects have been charged, aside from 18 U.S.C. § 1956, a U.S. anti-money-laundering statute that could carry a sentence of up to 20 years in prison; is unclear as of press time.
CONFIRMED: @DeepDotWeb's all domains seized. (.com and .onion links)
– 2 suspects have been arrested in Ashdod & Tel Aviv (34 & 35 years old).
– Arrests also made in France, Germany, & the Netherlands.
– Another site administrator has been arrested in Brazil. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/CxzJcxyQoG
— Suprateek Bose (@SupraBo_) May 7, 2019
Reportedly, the site was up and working until May 7 at 5:28 UTC, after which it abruptly shut down as police closed in on the site operators. The seizure follows the recent arrest of two German nationals who ran Wall Street Markets, which despite the name dealt in illicit goods rather than stocks and bonds.
Image source – Pixabay.com