Will Any Presidential Candidate Promise To Grant Clemency To Ross Ulbricht?

June 13, 2023 4:57 pm Comments

If you are familiar with the early days of cryptocurrency then the name Ross Ulbricht might ring a bell.

Ross Ulbricht who went by the pseudonym of Dread Pirate Roberts was the founder of the dark web trading platform the Silk Road.

The Silk Road was essentially the Amazon of the dark web where people could buy guns, illegal drugs, and other illegal products using cryptocurrency.

After a lengthy investigation, Ulbricht was arrested by authorities as the mastermind of the site and a Manhattan Federal court found Ulbricht “guilty of distributing narcotics, distributing narcotics by means of the Internet, conspiring to distribute narcotics, engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, conspiring to commit computer hacking, conspiring to traffic in false identity documents, and conspiring to commit money laundering.”

Ulbricht was sentenced to life in prison with no parole.

Ulbricht’s lengthy sentence and youthful looks have led many activists both Conservative and Democrats to call for his release.

Here is the likelihood Ross gets granted clemency by each major candidate:

  • Joe Biden: The likelihood that Joe Biden will grant clemency to Ulbricht is very slim. Anyone notable person that was locked up by the Obama administration won’t be seeing the outside walls anytime soon. Also, Biden has yet to pardon both Snowden and Assange. So, Ross will have to wait until 2024 to have any hope.


  • RFK Jr:  Robert F. Kennedy has shocked many Democrats circles due to the fact he’s polling at 20%. Kennedy in the last several months has called for the CIA and other governmental agencies to be “brought down” He also promised to pardon both Edwards Snowden and Julian Assange to be pardoned. In recent months Kennedy has been invited to several Bitcoin events so if the cryptocurrency community can let their opinion be known about Ross there may be a chance he gets a pardon under the Kennedy administration.


  • Trump: During his first term, President Trump did not grant clemency to Ulbricht however there may be hope for Ross if Trump is elected in 2024.  Trump has already promised to pardon non-violent J6ers. Also with Trump’s recent persecutions from the DOJ, he might have compassion for a guy like Ulbricht.


  • DeSantis: Currently DeSantis is far behind in the polls to Trump so the likelihood he gets in office is slim to none. However if he does get elected Ross Ulbricht will more than likely be an afterthought and the chances he gets out of jail are not that great.


Cointelegraph wrote this short biography about Ulbricht:

Ross Ulbricht, also known as Dread Pirate Roberts, is the owner of the trading platform Silk Road. Silk Road was a platform for trading drugs, psychotropic substances and other illegal products. The website was working as a hidden service with Bitcoin as the main currency that was used as a payment method on the site because of its relative anonymity, transactions’ speed and Ross’s affection for digital currency. Ross Ulbricht’s net worth is estimated to be several millions of dollars, a result of charging a fee on every successful deal. In 2013, he was arrested on charges of drug trafficking, hacking attacks and conspiracy to commit money laundering. In 2015, Ross Ulbricht was sentenced to life imprisonment at the age of 31.

Per Real Clear Policy:

In April, President Joe Biden granted clemency to 78 individuals who had been convicted on drug offenses that included possession and distribution, money laundering and tax evasion. Many of them had already served time under what many Americans, as well as leaders of both parties, acknowledge were unfair sentencing guidelines.

In the meantime, a 38-year-old American languishes in prison, his case largely ignored by most political leaders for a decade. He is serving two consecutive life sentences plus 40 years without parole, for creating and running a website.

In February 2011, Ross Ulbricht launched Silk Road, an anonymous, e-commerce free market. Silk Road was the product of a young man who had grown passionate about individual freedom and privacy rights while in college. Ulbricht said he created the website because, at the time he believed that “people should have the right to buy and sell whatever they wanted so long as they weren’t hurting anyone else.” He believed they should have “the freedom to make their own choices, to pursue their own happiness, however they individually saw fit.” Accessible through the US Navy-developed Tor browser, Silk Road offered its users the opportunity to pay anonymously for their transactions with the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, then in its infancy.

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