In Italy, investigators have placed a man under house arrest, suspected of hiring someone over the dark web (Dark Web) to mutilate the face of his ex-girlfriend.
Police said, “The man is accused of paying the equivalent of 10 thousand euros in bitcoin, in exchange for the attack, which would have paralyzed the woman.”
The Italian authorities and the European Union’s crime-fighting agency tracked down the suspect, and the woman was unharmed. Nor was the identity of the attacker revealed, who was supposed to carry out the attack.
What is the charge against the man?
Italy’s Post and Telecommunications Police described it as “the plot of a contemporary suspense movie”.
The suspected 40-year-old, an expert in informatics from the northern Lombardy region, allegedly entered the Dark Web, months after his separation from his girlfriend in July 2020.
Police said he contacted a mediator, through a website, to hire an attacker to throw acid in the face of his ex-girlfriend, break her back and cause her to be paralyzed.
Police added that despite four payments to the alleged attacker, the suspect remained in contact with his victim, sending her flowers and letters.
The Italian agency “Adnkronos” stated that the attack was supposed to appear as a robbery, according to what was mentioned in the arrest warrant.
The news agency said that “the suspect, who had a relationship with his ex-girlfriend for two years, shared her home address and her Facebook account.”
How did the investigators track him?
Italian authorities reported receiving a warning after the suspect’s letters were intercepted by police in another European country in February.
He presented the show via the “Tor” network, which is a complex network for accessing the dark web and blocking users’ data.
Nevertheless, the European Union’s crime-fighting agency (Europol) said it was able to “solve the urgent and complex encryption”, track down the suspect and then identify the person who was the source of the bitcoin transfers.
Then the Italian police were able to obtain more details about the suspect from the cryptocurrency provider.
The suspect’s home in Milan was subjected to a search at the end of February, according to Italian media, and with the start of the search process, he was said to have requested the cancellation of the mission he sought using his computer.
It was reported that he is currently under house arrest, on charges of severe harassment and attempted personal harm.