'Incognito Market' founder arrested in New York


A 23-year-old man from Taiwan has been arrested on charges of selling tens of millions of dollars worth of illegal drugs online through a site on the dark web known as the "Incognito Market."

Rui-Siang Lin, also known as "Pharoah," was arrested at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Saturday and was to appear in court on Monday, the Justice Department said.

"As alleged, Rui-Siang Lin was the architect of Incognito, a $100 million dark web scheme to traffic deadly drugs to the United States and around the world," Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement.

Incognito Market, which was shut down in March, was an online dark web marketplace that allowed users to buy and sell illegal drugs anonymously, according to the Justice Department.

Hundreds of kilograms (pounds) of cocaine, methamphetamines and other drugs were sold on Incognito Market since its launch in October 2020, it said.

"Under the promise of anonymity, Lin's alleged operation offered the purchase of lethal drugs and fraudulent prescription medication on a global scale," said James Smith, an assistant director in the FBI's New York office.

Users of Incognito Market were able to search thousands of listings for illegal narcotics, including heroin, cocaine, LSD, MDMA, oxycodone, methamphetamines, ketamine, and alprazolam.

Vendors paid five percent of the purchase price of every sale to "Incognito Market," providing Lin with millions of dollars of profits, the Justice Department said.

Lin faces up to life in prison if convicted of narcotics conspiracy.



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