“There must be no doubt that no one is above the law,” said sentencing judge Katherine B. Forrest as she handed down a life sentence to Ross Ulbricht, the man behind the black market website Silk Road, condemning him to a life in a privately-owned, state-controlled rape facility.
“What you did with Silk Road was terribly destructive to our social fabric,” added Forrest before sending Ulbricht to one of America’s rape-happy prisons, noted for their ability to produce criminals and destroy lives.
In an effort to send a message to anyone else willing to threaten social order and democracy, the Judge chose the harshest punishment available: life in a private for-profit rape warehouse filled with illegal drugs. Such a harsh sentence is the only way to restore people’s faith in order and justice. It’s the only way to prove that the government is good and laws are good.
“What you did was unprecedented,” said the Judge, noting the legal rule that if you’re the first person to do a crime, you have to have the harshest punishment, that way people won’t do the crime again. It’s how we stopped murder and stuff like that. It’s how we’ve stopped all crimes. “In breaking that ground as the first person, you [have to] pay the consequences for that.”
A large part of the consequence to be paid is the $183 million Ulbricht owes to the government for facilitating the sale of narcotics on his website, Silk Road. The money will help fund things like the privately owned corporate prison Ulbricht will be sent to, which unfortunately can’t make enough money off their prisoners who work for free when they’re not being raped or using illegal drugs that are smuggled into the prison by staff. It’s only fair.
If Ulbricht hadn’t created an environment like Silk Road, those drugs would have never been sold. The handful of people that overdosed wouldn’t have died. By creating Silk Road, he’s responsible for their deaths, and as such, he’ll have to spend the rest of his life in a private prison. Like, say, one owned by the GEO Group for example, whose CEO earns about $22 million a year and whose company has hundreds of lawsuits filed against it for civil rights violations resulting in numerous inmate deaths. That’s where Ulbricht has to go to learn an important lesson about social responsibility and justice.
Hopefully this sentencing produces it’s intended effect: sending a clear message to everyone that circumventing the law is dangerous. And hopefully future generations of enterprising young men will seek not a life of crime, creating free market websites with unregulated currency, but instead become valuable members of society, like the GEO Group CEO or perhaps one of the two DEA investigators that stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from Silk Road during the investigation.