One of Australia’s most wanted criminal suspects has now been arrested by New South Whales police.
Last Thursday, law enforcement agents nabbed Cody Ronald Ward, the suspect they believe is behind the dark web alias “NSW Great,” an infamous hacker and drug dealer known on the dark web.
NSWGreat has been wanted by the FBI, Homeland Security and Secret Service, as well as Interpol and Europol. The NSWGreat handle has reportedly made over 100,000 sales since late-2015 with a near-perfect 5/5 rating.
The 25-year-old alleged drug kingpin was arrested from the South Coast for his suspected trade of illegal substances on the dark web.
Ward supposedly is the infamous hacker NSWGreat, who has sold drugs on the platform for years.
NSWGreat has a history of talking to the media, breaking the perceived “rules” of the dark web. He also offered a service of forecasting scams before they actually happen.
The NSWGreat handle operated for six years, and just a year prior to Ward’s arrest, he stated that he was too good of a hacker to be caught.
NSWGreat became well known by the darknet community in 2015 when he sounded the alarm on an apparent exit scam by Evolution, a popular darknet market at the time.
Claiming to be a public relations associate of Evolution, NSWGreat disclosed on Reddit that the market’s administrators had run off with millions of dollars of users’ Bitcoin funds.
Less than a week prior to this post, NSWGreat hosted a Reddit AskMeAnything session speaking about his role as a PR spokesperson for Evolution.
As stated in the AMA post, the hacker had not encountered any problems with the police before even though he had made thousands of sales on the dark web.
NSWGreat was rated 4.96/5, which ultimately made him a trusted seller on the dark web.
After the exposure, NSWGreat became many buyers’ go-to choice for a vendor on the dark web.
The drug seller was more than sure he could stay anonymous and continue living his lavish lifestyle. He claimed to earn as much as a regular CEO does, with an exception of much more enjoyment and much less responsibility.
Police Connect NSWGreat to Ward
Although the notorious dark web vendor was certain about remaining anonymous, Ward, the person allegedly behind the mask, did not have any issues showing off his fortune.
The NSW Police discovered his Instagram profile where he had posted many pictures related to his use of Bitcoin, luxurious cars and restaurants.
The young man has also been vocal about being a hacker, frequently using the hashtag #hacker below his pictures and sharing thank-you posts from his satisfied customers.
Everything the police knew about the hacker linked with the lifestyle and abilities of Ward, connecting the dots to the eventual arrest.
Throughout the investigation, Detective Superintendent Matt Craft stated that the NSW police had already made several undercover purchases from their wanted hacker, NSWGreat.
It is alleged that inside the packages, the seller included a black mustache tab with a “thank you so much” note, as well as a calling card.
In a press conference, NSW Force officials revealed they conducted five raids seizing Ward’s computer, 200g of MDMA, more than 2kgs of white powder, and thousands of Xanax tablets, acid tabs, his Mercedes Benz and Maserati.
Inside the computer, the police found exactly what they were looking for, the NSWGreat dark web accounts and $17 million worth of cryptocurrency.
Ward was then arrested on February 14. A day after his arrest, at the Nowra Local Court, the defendant faced multiple drug-related charges.
Along with his arrest, police also apprehended two sisters who were accused of helping Ward fill the packets of drugs before sending them out.
Patricia Koullias, 24, and Shanese Koullias, 20, faced drug charges for their alleged participation.