Re: more RICO prosecutions?
Great question, and I'm following that up. This case prompts two bigger questions: Is the use of RICO appropriate for taking down people who -- for example in this case -- were smaller players? It was successfully used here, obviously, for Carder.su, which functioned like an eBay for stolen IDs. That means the government has been able to indict everyone to which it successfully sold fake IDs via Carder.su., thanks to its sting operation. Notably, however, the government failed to touch the actual Carder.su admins, who according to some reports are in Russia.
The key part of this RICO case hinges on an undercover Secret Service agent, "Celtic," selling Carder.su users fake IDs. Together with information gathered from the website (and we don't know to what extent the government may have infiltrated the site, beyond Celtic's storefront), the government was able to build its case.
Trying to apply RICO to a site of the Silk Road variety, however, would arguably be more difficult. The ATF's "Fast and Furious" guns sting operation got into hot water because the ATF lost track of the guns it was selling. Likewise, if the government tried to take down all of the users of a "darknet" narcotics-selling site, any undercover agent would need to appear to be trafficking in the real thing. Fake IDs, of course, aren't as much of a liability.
Long answer short: I'm not a lawyer, but according to ones I've spoken with, it looks like for this particular case, the stars lined up. In general, however, successfully applying RICO is -- and should remain -- tough, given the relatively harsh prison time and fines that can result.