A Georgia doctor pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a bungled murder plot that saw him give a dark web hitman $19,200 in bitcoin to kill his girlfriend — but not before he sent $8,000 in crypto to the wrong wallet address.
On April 18, 2022, 54-year-old internal medicine specialist James Wan used the dark web to order a hitman. As published by the US Attorney’s Office, Wan’s request said the hitman “Can take wallet phone and car. Shoot and go. Or take car.” It also provided the victim’s name, address, socials, and details of her car.
All he had to do was send a 50% downpayment of $8,000 in bitcoin to an escrow account shared with the hitman. However, Wan entered the wrong address and lost the money.
“Damn. I guess I lost $8k. I’m sending $8k to escrow now,” Wan said when he was informed of his error. He sent another $8,000 sum before his order was approved.
The hitman site asked if Wan wanted the hit to be an “accident or normal shooting,” to which Wan replied, “accident is better.” Wan then sent a further $8,000 worth of bitcoin to complete the payment.
Wan subsequently became impatient and transferred the hitman a further $1,200 in bitcoin to ensure his order was paid for.
However, by this point, the FBI had discovered the plot. Keri Farley, Special Agent for the FBI Atlanta department, said, “Despite his cowardly concealment on the dark web, Wan’s cold-hearted murderous plot was averted due to the exceptional work of our team.”
The FBI protected his girlfriend and Wan was later questioned. The doctor confessed to ordering the hitman and later canceled the order. His sentencing is scheduled for January 18.