A recently defunct darknet market, AlphaBay has been spotted on the news. Ronald L. Wheeler belonging to Illinois has been put on trial by an Atlanta federal court for conspiring to commit access device fraud. On conviction, Wheeler is bound to forfeit the entire money he has received through the illegal activities conducted while serving as a PR specialist for AlphaBay darknet website. As per the filings of the court, Wheeler has received over $27,000 US dollars and around 14 Bitcoins that approximately amounts to $108,000. The AlphaBay has been taken down in July 2017 and was one of the largest sites on the darknet that used to conduct illicit trading of firearms and drugs.
The AlphaBay darknet site was setup in September, 2014 by Alexandre Cazes who was known by Alpha02 and was involved in various drug trafficking activities. The site was formed following the downfall of Silk Road which is believed to be the substitute for the Silk Road. Cazes hanged himself till death before a court hearing on 12th of July in the same year in the custody of Thai police.
Apart from the indictment of Wheeler, there were also other prosecutions against several other suspects who were involved in the AlphaBay scam. Ronald Wheeler has pled of not being guilty of the recent charge and he has been released on bond. Though the magistrate, Janet King has permitted him to get released of a bond the case is still pending in the court. She concluded that the drug testing procedures will be necessary while the lawyer of the accused, Philip Turner did not make any comments post the hearing.
It was also known from the source that Wheeler was about to be the PR specialist for the darknet market, AlphaBay from May 2015 onwards. Wheeler also operated under the pseudonyms Trappy and Trappy_Pandora.