Following our previous article about Mannion and Connor. Neil Mannion (34) and Richard O’Connor (34), the Dublin dark net market vendor pair, has been sentenced by Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on December 21. The duo had been selling drugs on Silk Road and Agora. During their bust on October 2014, the law enforcement authorities found €143,000 worth of illegal substances in south Dublin.
Quoting from our previous article about the two men, this is the prelude to the case:
”Both men pleaded guilty to possession of LSD, amphetamine and cannabis resin with the intent to sell or supply at Bank House Business Centre, South Circular Road on November 5, 2014. Neither man has any previous convictions.”
While Mannion was in the charge of the dark web drug dealing ring, O’Connor was paid for the packaging and posting of the packages that have been sent to customers around the world.
How the police caught the two men:
”Detective Sgt Roberts told Caroline Cummings BL from prosecution that the police placed Mannion under surveillance after they received confidential information about a computer’s IP address. They followed Mannion’s car to the business address and later obtained a search warrant. The Irish Gardaí found Mannion and O’Connor on the premises, along with a bag containing the drugs, a vacuum packing machine, weighing scales, envelopes and labels for posting,” quoting from our previous article.
Neil Mannion, the Bitcoin trader, has been sentenced for 6 and half a year of jail time, while Richard O’Connor, the film technician, got a sentence of 3 years in prison.
Judge Martin Nolan gave a six and a half year term to Mannion. The judge called him “the brains of the operation”. According to Nolan, unlike most people before the court who were drug carriers or mules, Mannion owned and sold the drugs, which he sourced to his customers.
He imposed a three-year sentence on O’Connor who, according to him, was acting under Mannion’s instructions in return for a weekly wage. Nolan also said that the current case is pretty unusual since ”the drugs were sold online using the dark web to countries around the world.”
He also made this statement:
“It may seem that committing crimes on the internet is somewhat easier than selling drugs on the street. It gives the impression of invulnerability and the impression that the crime is less serious, but it’s not. These two sold drugs to third parties for profit.”