28 year-old Marissa Mark of Jersey City was arrested today in connection with a 2006 hit she allegedly took out on her ex-boyfriend's new girlfriend. Her case is the latest development in the saga of Hitmanforhire.net, probably the first and last online assassination startup.
In 2006, Egyptian immigrant Essam Ahmed Eid was working as a poker dealer at Las Vegas' Bellagio Casino. But he wanted to work with people: specifically, killing them. So he set up Hitmanforhire.net. The site featured a cheesy picture of a Tommy Gun, and read:
Hitman is the perfect solution for your killing needs. We offer a variety of professional assassination services available worldwide. Whether you are trying to put an end to a domestic dispute or eliminate your business competitors, we have the solution for you.
But Eid wasn't really going to kill people, according to this definitive account in the Las Vegas Sun. "His whole strategy was not to kill the intended target, but to let him in on the plan, to tell whomever he'd been hired to kill all about it, and then generously give him the opportunity to buy out the bounty on his life."
In September of 2006, Marissa Mark hired Eid to shoot her ex-boyfriend's new girlfriend in the head, giving him a down payment via Paypal. (As PogowasRight points out: "PayPal lets you make a payment to hitmanforhire.com contact, but not to donate to WikiLeaks?") But Eid turned around and contacted the mark, Southern California loan broker Anne Royston. He offered to call off the hit in exchange for the $37,000 balance of the contract, according to the Sun. (She called the cops on him, of course.) Before this scheme was completed, Eid flew to Ireland to deal with another client—a woman who wanted her multimillionaire boyfriend whacked—got arrested and has been in Irish prison ever since.
This sort of makes Hitmanforhire.net the Napster of online assassination services. Sure, it got shut down by the Man, but undoubtedly inspired legions of future Internet hitmen. They probably all work via Facebook these days. Don't try to take out a hit on Hitmanforhire.net: It's owned by Michael Duke Productions, which is making a film about the whole thing. We'd watch that.
[Image of Hitmanforhire.net circa 2006 via the Wayback Machine]