A Dark Web Marketplace for Murder: The Disturbing Case of Online Killers Market

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Alabama Woman Targeted for Murder by Online “Hitmen” Market

A dark and sinister website known as the “Online Killers Market” made headlines after it was revealed that at least one woman was targeted for murder by its “hired hitmen”. The woman, a resident of Alabama, was identified as the partner of a man whom a certain Melody Sasser met on the dating site Match.com. According to authorities, Sasser was the one who reached out to the site’s administrators, requesting that someone be hired to kill the woman for $9,750.

The criminal operation

The website, which was operational until recently, reportedly had over 12,000 members who had the option to create an account and place an order for any of the criminal “services” offered on the menu. These included not just homicide but also kidnapping, extortion, hacking, sexual assault, and even disfigurement by acid attacks.

The hit on the Alabama woman

Based on court documents filed in the case against Sasser, the online market offered “professional thugs” who were willing to do the job for the $9,750 payment. Sasser followed the steps on the site and provided details about the intended victim, including her car and license plate number. She requested that the murder should look like an accident and shouldn’t be investigated for long.

The arrest of the suspect

The site was eventually taken down, and Sasser was arrested after authorities in another country learned about the murder plot and notified US authorities. Law enforcement agents traced Sasser to her home in Prattville, Alabama, using the information about the intended victim provided by the website.

Sasser appeared in a Tennessee court and if convicted, could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and three years of probation, along with a fine of up to $250,000.

The case has raised concerns about the ethics of deep-learning software, such as the “large language model” or LLM, used in the creation of the website, and the need to regulate the development and use of such technology to avoid similar incidents in the future.

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