During a police operation in South Korea, 78 persons were detained on suspicion of utilizing cryptocurrencies to purchase and sell illegal substances online.
According to JTBC, officers of the Seoul Metropolitan Police claimed in a statement that they have arrested 166 consumers and 12 suspected drug sellers. The notification also said that the police had apprehended the drug sellers. All of these have participated in transactions using cryptocurrencies and dark web networks.
Tokens, over $8,500 in cash, 12 kilograms of marijuana, and large quantities of synthetic cannabinoids, ketamine, and MDMA were said to have been seized by the authorities, who also claimed to have found MDMA and ketamine.
The majority of the suspected drug consumers were described as being in their 20s and 30s, with a small number falling in the age range of 40 to 59. It appears that some of the drug transactions were performed using bitcoin (BTC), and it appears that some of those bitcoin payments were made.
According to the police, all of the offenders used a platform on the dark web that enabled would-be dealers to post for free but charged a 10% fee on all transfers. These fees were paid in cryptocurrency, and the operations were carried out on the platform.
The authorities have confirmed that every single one of the narcotics dealers has been discovered. Due to their ability to avoid discovery, the administrators of the dark web portal were not apprehended during the police operation in South Korea.
According to officials from the police department, the network utilized darkweb technologies, cryptoassets, and chat systems such as Telegram. As a result, it was an obvious choice for adolescent females, but it held significantly less interest for elderly people.
Officers also issued a warning stating that many young people who are very technology literate are able to readily buy drugs online; however, they are lulled into a false feeling of security since they frequently assume that police officers cannot find them. The following is the caution that has been issued:
“Young individuals who have a high level of computer literacy have a much easier time purchasing illegal substances online. However, this is not the case, despite the fact that people may believe they do not leave any traces of their acts if they buy narcotics using crypto assets. We have established a specialized inspection team, and the guilty parties will be brought to justice in due time.”
Regulations around drugs are regarded to be particularly stringent in South Korea. Due to the fact that many East Asian countries have highly harsh drug prohibitions, occurrences like these are not that unusual. The police agency just recently established a Darkweb and Cryptosset Special Investigation Team to look into cryptocurrency-related crimes.
Officers also indicated that they had a hunch that specific users of the dark web may have connections to some of the restaurants in Seoul that have the most foot traffic.
According to Newsis, a secretary for the police department made a pledge to “identify darkweb administrators” and “expand” the police’s “investigation.” She also vowed to investigate “whether or not these operators are related to prominent clubs and amusement parks in Seoul.”