BEVERLY HILLS—On Monday, June 13, Scott Quinn Berkett, 25, pleaded guilty to one count of use of interstate facilities to commit murder-for-hire.
“Berkett admitted in his plea agreement that, soon afterward in April 2021, he solicited and paid for murder-for-hire services via a website on the darknet that offered such services. Berkett provided the darknet group with specific directions and details about his target. As payment for the victim’s murder, Berkett sent the darknet group bitcoin payments totaling approximately $13,000,” said the United States Department of Justice in a press release.
The allegations stem from a May 2021, murder-for-hire plot initiated by Burkett who solicited an undercover law enforcement officer who was posing as a hitman to kill a woman who he met and briefly dated. The woman reportedly referred to Quinn as “sexually aggressive,” and repeatedly tried to end the short-lived relationship.
According to the affidavit, the undercover officer sent photos of the victim to Berkett who confirmed that this was the “intended victim.” The defendant then made an additional $1,000 payment to the officer via Western Union.
The United States District Judge Mark C. Scarsi set the sentencing hearing for Berkett for September 12, at which time he faces a maximum federal prison sentence of up to 10 years prison time.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) investigated the case. The Assistant United States Attorney, Kathy Yu, of the Violent and Organized Crime Section is prosecuting the case.