The US Department of Justice announced that law enforcement have arrested 179 people and seized crypto worth $6.5 million. In the massive burst operation dubbed “Operation DisrupTor,” 500 kilograms of drugs and 63 firearms got seized.
The hostile burst operation which lasted 9 months had law enforcement trace criminals through information from Wall Street Market in 2019.
The combined effort of Europol and the DOJ’s Joint Criminal Opioid and Darknet Enforcement team lead to sanitation.
International Law Enforcement Operation Targeting Opioid Traffickers on the Darknet Results in over 170 Arrests Worldwide & the Seizure of Weapons, Drugs & over $6.5 Millionhttps://t.co/D2AZzLijAk pic.twitter.com/SNLkEhvgEA
— Justice Department (@TheJusticeDept) September 22, 2020
After due intelligence, both agencies nabbed darknet drug dealers. From the 500kg drugs seized, 274kg were seized in the US and all 63 guns. From the 179 arrests, 123 were caught in North America.
Arrested suspects sold drugs in different darknet markets like AlphaBay, Empire, and DeepSea. However, some of these markets have been shut down after the “Operation DisrupTor.”
DoJ, FBI sounds warning to darknet drug dealers
In a statement by Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, he sounded a note of warning to drug dealers. He said the cyberspace cannot be a safe haven for them regardless of where they are.
“The arrest of 179 of them in seven countries—with the seizure of their drug supplies and their money as well—shows that there will be no safe haven for drug dealing in cyberspace.”
FBI Director Christopher Wray, assured that they are committed to identifying Darknet drug dealers and bringing them to justice.
“The FBI wants to assure the American public, and the world, that we are committed to identifying Darknet drug dealers and bringing them to justice, he said.
Wray said they would continue to work with the Europol to be actively engaged in a combined effort to disrupt the borderless, worldwide trade of illicit drugs.
Arrested drug dealers have pleaded guilty. Teresa McGrath of Sunland-Tujunga and Mark Chavez of downtown Los Angeles pleaded guilty to trafficking drugs and both face minimum prison sentences of 15 years.
The operation was one of the largest attempts to combat criminal activity across the dark web. The operation lasted nine months and resulted in multiple federal prosecutions across different jurisdictions.
Stealthgod, a drug trafficking group linked to over 18,000 illicit drug sales, has faced prosecution since this operation began. Another Arden McCann, a Canadian resident got prosecuted for drug trafficking into the United States among others.