Thomas Jiřikovský, the creator of the Sheep Marketplace, along with his wife Eve Bartošová, were indicted on numerous charges early this week by Czech law enforcement. The Sheep Marketplace launched in March of 2013 and was often used as a Silk Road alternative after the shutdown by authorities in 2014.
The market’s troubles started in late 2013 when Sheep Marketplace was hacked by one of their vendors, EBOOK101. The vendor stole 54,000 bitcoin from the site, but justice was eventually served with the arrest of two Floridians.
More recently, Jiřikovský made an exit and stole all of the remaining fourty-thousand Bitcoin on the market’s servers belonging to the users and vendors. In the process of purchasing a house with the stolen Bitcoin, the criminal gave away his anonymity by making a large transfer from Coinbase and was arrested by Czech official along with his wife. Jiřikovský was charged with “crimes of unauthorized production and the handling of narcotic and psychotropic substances, theft and illegal possession of firearms,” and the man’s wife was indicted for money laundering. It is said the Czechian man could face up to eighteen years in prison if convicted, the woman up to eight years.
Other darknet market exit scams such Oasis, Atlantis and Sheep Marketplace give rise to the importance of continued development of decentralized marketplaces such as OpenBazaar, Axis Munid and BitMarket.