After lengthy digital investigations by skilled investigators, a 29-year-old drug vendor from Nantes who called himself “DrugSource” on the dark web was detained and taken into custody. The profits gained from his illicit activities could exceed 1.5 million euros, as indicated by the prosecutor in Rennes.
This man is considered to have organized the traffic on the dark web, having been suspected of making “at least 3,000 sales of narcotics between mid-September and mid-October 2021, and offered mainly in ecstasy, MDMA, heroin, and cocaine”. According to investigators from the Financial Judicial Investigation Service (SEJF) and the Gendarmerie Cyberspace Command’s cybercrime centre (ComCyberGend – C3N), co-chaired by the Rennes Interregional Specialized Jurisdiction (JIRS)
The drug vendor mostly made sales through his telegram channels and darknet markets like DarkFox and Vice City.
“The profits generated by DrugSource in the context of its illegal activities could exceed 1.5 million euros,” added the prosecutor of the Republic of Rennes, Philippe Astruc, in a statement issued Tuesday.
Another Man Under Arrest
Following the previous investigation, an individual aged 24 living in Le Mans, Sarthe, was identified as the logistician. After two years of combining traditional and digital detective techniques, investigators arrested them both at their homes on September 20. “The searches and hearings have confirmed their involvement in the trafficking,” adds the prosecutor.
The logistician had realized the information during his custody. The man from Nantes admitted to having known and participated in laundering the profits from the traffic. So far, with the joint efforts of the Financial Judicial Investigation Service (SEJF) and ComCyberGend, including the specialized investigators from Gendarmerie(Fintech), have managed to seize over 450,000 in goods and values. Of which 432,000 are in the form of cryptocurrencies, 9000 euros in cash and the remaining 23,000 in other bank investments.
The Main Culprit In the Investigation
The suspects were presented to the criminal prosecutor of Rennes on September 23 and subjected to a process of appearance with a deferred deadline. They were prosecuted before the criminal court on charges of trafficking in narcotics, possession of prohibited goods without regular supporting documents, and money laundering from drug trafficking. The suspects are now facing a 10-year jail term.
The trial is scheduled for November 14 at 9:00 am local time. The most involved accused, previously convicted for offences committed over the internet, has been placed in pre-trial detention. The logistician not admitted is placed under judicial control.
The inquiries took place in September 2020 after the local digital crime unit of the National Directorate of Intelligence and Customs Investigations (DNRED) opened an administrative investigation in reaction to the detection of drug promotion on the Darknet and Telegram.