- Street: Lietzenburger Strasse 25
- City: Bergisch Gladbach Gladbach
- State: North Carolina
- Country: Germany
- Zip/Postal Code: 51467
‘Largest illegal darknet marketplace’ DarkMarket taken offline
Authorities say the darknet platform had fifty per cent of a million users, where drugs, counterfeit money, stolen credit card data, anonymous SIM cards and malware were traded. The suspected operator was arrested in Germany.
German prosecutors in the cities of Koblenz and Oldenburg said on Tuesday that they’d turn off that which was “probably the greatest illegal marketplace on the Darknet ” called DarkMarket and arrested the man believed to work it near Germany’s border with Denmark.
The detained man, believed to be DarkMarket’s operator, is a 34-year-old Australian national.
Authorities say drugs, counterfeit money, stolen credit card data, anonymous SIM cards and malware were all traded on the website, which had a half a million users and transacted business in cryptocurrencies equal to a value of €140 million ($170 million).
Oldenburg police said the raid took place over the weekend. “Investigators could actually shut down the market and turn fully off the server on Monday,” prosecutors said.
DarkMarket’s bust wasn’t the first for German authorities, which are finding illegal platform operators on German soil in recent years. In 2019, Koblenz prosecurots announced the discovery of darknet servers hosted from the former NATO bunker in a sleepy German town.
Authorities say the probe that uncovered DarkMarket involved a months-long international police force operation.
US agencies such as the FBI, DEA narcotics police force division and IRS tax authority all contributed to the investigation, along side police from Australia, Britain, Denmark, Switzerland, Ukraine and Moldova, with Europol playing a “coordinating role.”
“An overall total of at the least 320,000 transactions were carried out via the Darkode market – https://pathta.jp/user/profile/16499850, with more than 4,650 Bitcoin and 12,800 Monero – two of the very common cryptocurrencies – changing hands,” Oldenburg authorities added.
During the time of its closure, DarkMarket had significantly more than 2,400 vendors.
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