While working on a dark web investigation, the journalists had unearthed about a Wisconsin woman who had paid in bitcoin to the administrator of a murder-for-hire or assassination website on the dark web. She had asked the administrator to kill a man.
The dark web is an encrypted internet section that is full of purported hitmen offering killings for the right price. The assassination concept on the dark web seems exciting, but most of the assassins are scam artists most of the time. But this incidence was pretty shocking.
The accused of this incident has been identified as a resident of Columbus, Wisconsin named Kelly Harper aged 37 years. She was lurking on the dark web to hire someone who would commit murder on her order.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Wisconsin had filed a complaint according to which one of the journalists had noticed the target’s details (name and address) on a dark web website. The details also bore the victim’s cell phone number and images of the man’s vehicle. A chilling message had also been attached that read:
“The target needs to be killed, he is a white 5 foot 5 male, dark brown short hair, blue eyes, weighs 165 pounds.”
The complaint went on to say that “the murder-for-hire site administrator responded to [the Suspect’s] message and requested proof of payment in the form of bitcoin. [Suspect] responded by sharing a screenshot of a bitcoin wallet with a value of approximately $5,633.87.”
The unnamed journalists also tracked a bitcoin (BTC) payment from the accused to another assassination website administrator, as per the complaint. The journalists without much waiting alerted the target of their discovery on the dark web, and his girlfriend had reported the situation to the FBI. The agents then traced the IP address, phone number, and email that were linked to the Bitcoin wallet to the accused’s residence.
The feds then questioned Harper who allegedly admitted “to paying bitcoin to the administrator of a murder-for-hire dark web site in order to have [the target] killed,” the complaint says.
When the FBI agents had been searching for the accused’s residence, they had discovered screenshots of the website on her computer along with a picture that she had sent to the assassination site administrator.
The court document, however, did not indicate any motive for the alleged hitman-for-hire plot.
Some of the relatives of the accused who were reached by the phone had declined to comment on the same. The accused’s social media posts indicated that she had at least three children, while the public records show that she had also stayed in Arizona.
Currently, the accused has been held at the Dane County jail. If she is convicted, she will have to face up to 10 years behind bars.
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