Mark Karpeles, the CEO of stricken Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox, has denied any involvement in the online black market Silk Road.
Earlier today in the trial of Ross Ulbricht, accused of running Silk Road under the pseudonym Dread Pirate Roberts, a DHS agent said under cross-examination that Karpeles had been a prime suspect in the investigation before attention fell on Ulbricht. Lawyers for the defense implied, if not outright argued, that Karpeles was the real Dread Pirate Roberts and had wanted to artificially inflate the value of Bitcoin.
"I have nothing to do with Silk Road."
But Karpeles has ridiculed the suggestion in an email to Motherboard. "This is probably going to be disappointing for you, but I am not Dread Pirate Roberts," he writes. "The investigation reached that conclusion already — this is why I am not the one sitting during the Silk Road trial, and I can only feel defense attorney Joshua Dratel trying everything he can to point the attention away from his client."
"I have nothing to do with Silk Road and do not condone what has been happening there. I believe Bitcoin (and its underlying technology) is not meant to help people evade the law, but to improve everyone's way of life by offering never thought before possibilities."
This is sure to be just the latest twist in what has so far proven to be a frequently unbelievable story. We'll continue to bring you updates.