Two men from Duisburg (aged 20 and 28), Germany and five suspects (aged 22 to 30) from Goslar, Hameln, Vreden, Esslohe, and Saarbrücken, were arrested in suspicion of running a vendor shop on the dark web.

According to documents at the König-Heinrich-Platz Court, the seven suspects were running a vendor shop on the dark net selling narcotics, including marijuana, cocaine, amphetamine and ecstasy pills. The busted vendor shop’s name remains unknown due to the lack of information provided by authorities.

The prosecution accused the seven suspects of the criminal trafficking of more than 50 kilograms of marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, as well as with thousands of ecstasy pills. The list of charges was so long that a prosecutor of the Cybercrime North Rhine-Westphalia Central Office (ZAC NRW) needed about three hours to read the 70-page prosecution sentence.

Police information says that the vendor group was selling on dark net markets and was only accepting payments exclusively in bitcoins (like most dark web vendors). Authorities also added that the gang was tightly organized; the two men from Duisburg and a 23-year-old were responsible for narcotics procurement and distribution. The four other suspects were operating the technical side (eg. running the vendor shop on the dark web) of the business.

A thorough police investigation showed that some of the defendants were involved in the sale of drugs on the streets too. In addition to that, law enforcement authorities claim that one of the suspects bought counterfeit bills and professionally falsified badges from the dark web.

On Friday, the whole court procedure did not go beyond reading the charges. Ten further negotiation days are planned by March 16, 2017.

On November 29 in Germany, law enforcement authorities detained a 27-year-old man from Rosenheim accused of running a dark net vendor shop. As several dark web dealers, the Rosenheim man raised suspicion when a parcel delivered back to the return address. The suspect, instead of his own, provided a travel agency’s address for package returns. When the agency received the parcel full drugs, they immediately reported the issue to local authorities. Police information says that the vendor had never written his own address on the parcels he sent to his customers. Instead, he used travel agencies’ addresses in Rosenheim.

After a few months of investigation, law enforcement authorities arrested the suspect and his 23-year-old co-habitant, who is also accused of drug trafficking. During the home search of the two suspects in Frasdorf, law enforcement authorities seized 1.2 kg of amphetamine paste, 680 ecstasy pills, 65 LSD blotters and 1.7 kg of psilocybin mushrooms. In addition to that, detectives discovered a hidden room in the apartment. Behind a large wardrobe was a professional growery for marijuana plants. Police “harvested” 4.2 kilograms of cannabis plants and umbels.

According to police information, the investigation is not even close to being finished. They already have a strong case against the vendor, however, they are looking for more suspects. Since the 27-year-old mostly dealt drugs on the dark web, authorities are searching for customer information on the vendor’s devices and accounts.

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