Delivery is the weakest link in the "dark web" drug trade: the postal habits of a large-scale trader have led to his undoing.
Chukwuemeka Okparaeke is accused of dealing in very nasty stuff: Fentanyl, a high-strength synthetic opioid the Centre for Disease Control says is 50 times the potency of heroin and was responsible for nearly 10,000 deaths in the US in 2015.
Okparaeke may have been a capable Tor user, but his logistical clue needed work: he was caught not because someone linked him to his handle ("Fentmaster", on a site called the AlphaBay Marketplace), but because wearing latex gloves while depositing large numbers of packages at US post offices got the attention of staff.
He was seen at several post offices in the Middletown area of New York, and because he was bulk-buying priority delivery stamps, staff had also viewed his driver's licence.
-- submitted from IRC
A congressional report released Wednesday lays out just how easy it is for Americans to buy the deadly opioid fentanyl from Chinese suppliers online and have it shipped to them via the government's own postal service. The report also lays out just how difficult the practice will be to stop.
After Googling phrases such as "fentanyl for sale," Senate investigators followed up with just six of the online sellers they found. This eventually led them to 500 financial transaction records, accounting for about $766 million worth of fentanyl entering the country and at least seven traceable overdose deaths.
[...] "Thanks to our bipartisan investigation, we now know the depth to which drug traffickers exploit our mail system to ship fentanyl and other synthetic drugs into the United States," Republican Senator Rob Portman of Ohio said in a statement. "The federal government can, and must, act to shore up our defenses against this deadly drug and help save lives."
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