On August 30, Customs officers in Paris intercepted two packages that amongst “thousands of others” contained significant weights of several illegal substances. A K-9 unit, officers said, noticed the packages. Barely more than two weeks later, at the Criminal Court of Clermont-Ferrand, the package recipients and others involved received their sentences.

Customs officers traced the package back to the intended recipients: 20-year-old and a 23-year-old. The package, opened by the 20-year-old at his apartment, contained 610 ecstasy pills, 113 grams of hashish, and 9 grams of marijuana. Police officers found an additional 100 grams of amphetamine while searching the building. While the package belonged to both men, both were in the apartment at the time, and the amphetamine belonged to the younger of the two.

According to their statements, the 20-year-old had purchased the drugs from a darknet marketplace. The 23-year-old had purchased Bitcoin to finance the order. The two explained that some of the substances would have stayed with them, but they would have sold the remainder to numerous other entities in order to continue to finance their own consumption. Investigators alleged that this delivery was the sixth of its kind.

At the sentencing hearing, the lawyer of one of the defendants announced that his “client had already taken matters into his own hands before his arrest. He had cut the bridges with his associates.” He asked the court to see the difference in both defendant’s crimes. One only sponsored the package while the other simply received it. Additionally, both defendant’s attorneys had argued that both men had obtained steady jobs—a clear indication that they had only sold for personal consumption, they proposed.

“It’s much more than a resale for the sole purpose of financing a personal consumption,” the prosecution argued. “This traffic was for profit and was made with knowledge of its harmfulness.” The duo’s sentence, one of less than a year in police custody, seemingly misaligned with the prosecutor’s stance. And despite the argument of the elder defendant’s attorney, both men received the same sentence: 12 months in prison with eight months suspended and a $4,777 fine.

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