The newest incarnation of the Silk Road (now dubbed Silk Road 2.0) has been shut down since the beginning of November 2014. However, those who bought and sold their wares on the illicit drug site are still feeling the long arm of the FBI and other law enforcement agencies.
A Northern California couple, David Schell, 54, and Teri Schell, 59, were both recently indicted by a federal grand jury for conspiracy to distribute marijuana on the illegal website. In all, the couple was charged with 11 criminal counts in relation to their scheme to sell marijuana and marijuana-related products online.
The FBI had been looking into the activities of Silk Road 2.0 for most of 2014 and was most likely keeping tabs on the various IP addresses that were accessing the illegal site. This led authorities to the drug bazaar’s purported owner/operator, San Francisco techie Blake Benthall. Now that the feds had the "head of the snake," the Silk Road 2.0 was immediately shut down after Benthall's arrest. This in turn prompted an even more rigorous investigation by the FBI into the site and those who had been profiting from it.
One such IP address led authorities to the Schell's home, which was raided on the very day Silk Road 2.0 was shut down. The FBI had already been watching the Schells for a good 8 months before the raid on the family’s home was carried out. In that time frame, the Schells allegedly sent more than 100 packages overseas. Once inside the home, authorities found more than 450 marijuana plants, marijuana wax and other concentrates, over $12,000 in cash, and a plethora of packing materials.