In a forum where its users discuss the buying and selling of drugs in full view of the public, rumours are circulating that the darknet market place named Evolution has closed its doors with the owners taking with them anywhere up to 43,000 BTC in user funds.
Deepdotweb first reported yesterday on the difficulties Evolution users were facing in withdrawing their bitcoins. To placate those users, Kimble, one of the owners of Evolution provided this explanation for the delay:
"I'm very sorry about the delays. There's currently a backlog on withdrawals as we are working on processing the large amounts and the quantity thereof. Please be patient, all withdrawals will be processed within the next 24 hours. Apologies for the inconvenience."
Just an hour prior to the site going offline, a former Evolution staff member by the name of NSWGreat informed his fellow users that Verto and Kimble, the site's two owners, were exiting with all funds. NSWGreat posted:
I hate to the bearer of bad news, but I've been suspicious the past few days with withdrawals not working and admins usually are more forth coming in explaining to me why they're slow but they weren't this time. Just kept giving me time-frames
I have admin access to see parts of the back end, the admins are preparing to exit scam with all the funds. Not a single withdrawal has gone through in almost a week. Automatic withdrawals has been disabled which is only doing on rare occasions
I am so sorry, but Verto and Kimble have fucked us all. I have over $20,000 in escrow myself from sales.
I can't fucking believe it, absolute scum. I am giving this warning to you all as soon as I possibly could of.
Confronted Kimble and Verto about it, they confirmed it and they're doing it right now..
EDIT: Servers have gone down, including back up server for staff. I'm sorry for everyone's loses, I'm gutted and speechless. I feel so betrayed.
EDIT2: Yes this is real, no this isn't maintenance. No I can't help anyone. Evolution can officially be put on the Wall of Shame.
I wish I could of done more, I hope you can forgive me for not noticing and speaking up earlier.
Evolution first came online back in January of 2014 but it was not the first attempt by Verto to operate a dark market website. He is also known for having operated TCF, or the Tor Carding Forum who's closure late last year coincided with the arrest of a TCF vendor. That arrest and the subsequent closure of TCF lead to one blogger's suggestion that TCF and Evolution may have been compromised by law enforcement yet permitted to continue operating in order to collect additional information on the users of such sites as is the historical precedent with carding sites.