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BY: Charles Fain Lehman
Federal law enforcement officials announced Tuesday the arrest of 61 dark net drug vendors as part of Operation SaboTor, the second take down by the Joint Criminal Opioid and Darknet Enforcement (J-CODE).
Addition - Arrests - US - Agents - Law
In addition to the 61 arrests, U.S. agents and their international law enforcement partners shut down 50 dark net accounts. They also seized nearly 300 kilograms of drugs, 51 firearms, and more than $7 million in cryptocurrency, cash, and gold.
"Darknet" is an ominous term with a less-than-scary meaning: it refers to sites available on the internet but which are not indexed by search engines. Many of these sites also require special software to access them, most frequently the encrypted browsing tool Tor.
Net - Host - Number - Sites - Selling
The dark net does play host, however, to a number of sites specifically designed for the selling of illicit contraband—especially drugs, but also firearms and illegal pornography. According to the Rand Corporation, online drug sales are a small but growing proportion of total sales, accounting for between $12 and $21 million in revenue in January 2016 alone.
Dark net markets are, however, a particularly popular source for mail-order drugs, which routinely arrive to the United States from China in the U.S. mail. These often include the deadly opioid fentanyl, making online markets a major vector for overdose deaths caused by it.
This is why the markets have been a...
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