The U.S.-based business partner of the world’s former largest online drug dealer is in federal custody in Florida and plans to plead guilty, authorities say.
Angel William Quinones, 34, was nabbed with the help of young multi-millionaire Dutch drug dealer Cornelis Jan “SuperTrips” Slomp — who admitted in a Chicago courtroom last week that he sold more illegal narcotics on the now-shuttered underground website “Silk Road” than anyone else.
Quinones, who went by the online name “UnderGroundSyndicate,” acted as Slomp’s U.S. distributor of ecstasy and helped him convert bitcoins into cash, the feds say. Slomp was planning to hand over his entire U.S. operations to Quinones when he was arrested in August at Miami International Airport.
Instead Slomp immediately cooperated with prosecutors, his attorney Paul Petruzzi said. And Quinones’ Florida home was raided when Silk Road was shut down in October.
Agents found $157,000 in cash, documents and keys to postal boxes Slomp and Quinones used for shipments of ecstasy, the feds say.
Though Quinones has been charged in Tampa, his capture is a victory for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Chicago, which led the investigation of Slomp after a seizure of drugs at O’Hare in 2012.
Slomp could yet be a key prosecution witness Silk Road’s alleged founder Ross William Ulbricht — who allegedly went by “Dread Pirate Roberts” — and is accused in a New York federal court case of drug trafficking, soliciting murder, facilitating computer hacking and money laundering.
Several imitators of Silk Road, where anonymous traders sold illegal drugs and other illicit products, have sprung up since Ulbricht’s arrest in San Francisco in October.