The former Drug Enforcement Agency agent accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Silk Road online drug market and then extorting its owner will plead guilty, according to court papers obtained by Ars Technica. Word of Carl Force's plea comes after Shaun Bridges, a former U.S. Secret Service agent, also agreed to plead guilty to stealing $820,000 in bitcoin over the course of the same investigation.
Force, while working undercover to take down the largest drug market then online, used the “Nob” user account to track vendors. He also created a second identity, “French Maid,” and used it to try to extort Ross Ulbricht, the Silk Road's founder and operator. Force was paid $90,000 in bitcoin as Nob and a $100,000 payment as French Maid.
Force also sought $250,000 from a third account, which he used to tell Ulbricht that he knew his identity and would reveal it unless being paid.
Force is expected to formally enter his guilty plea on July 1. Ulbricht, 31, convicted as the operator of the Silk Road after a three-week trial in January, was sentenced to life in prison last month.
Both the prosecution and the defense knew of the investigative corruption during Ulbricht's trial, though the issue remained secret until after the verdict was read. Ulbricht's defense team has filed an appeal based on what evidence was allowed into testimony.