A Canadian man described as the second banana in the Silk Web dark web criminal operation is facing at least 20 years in prison.
Roger Thomas Clark, 56, pleaded guilty last week in New York to a single charge of conspiracy to distribute narcotics.
He was arrested four years ago in his Thailand lair.
Silk Road gained notoriety after launching on the dark web in 2011 as a purveyor of illegal drugs, guns and murder.
The FBI cut its cord in 2013. Silk Road’s mastermind was a Californian named Ross William Ulbricht, 35, who amassed more than 100,000 customers and who played the middle man in hundreds of millions in dope deals and other illegal transactions.
The feds called Clark the younger man’s “senior adviser.” His aliases included “Plural of Mongoose” and “Variety Jones”.
Ulbricht is serving life in prison with no chance of parole.
Clark will be sentenced on May 29.
At one point, Clark boasted he would never see the inside of an American courtroom: “They don’t have [expletive] on me.”
More recently, he admitted providing Silk Road with technical advice and said he was the site’s “de facto head of marketing.”
Clark wrote: “I often developed ideas for changing and improving the technical structure of the site to make it easier for users to access. I developed ideas on how to expand the Silk Road brand into other areas and how to improve the site.”
Prosecutors portrayed Clark’s role as much less benign.
“Clark was a central figure in helping to lead Silk Road and in advocating violence to protect the site,” U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a statement.
“Clark even went so far as to urge, and facilitate, the attempted killing of a co-conspirator suspected of stealing from Silk Road.”