THREE people have been charged over a $17 million online drug syndicate in what police believe is the “first and largest penetration of the dark web” in Australia.
The 25-year-old man and two women, aged 20 and 24, were arrested on Thursday following an near 10 month investigation in to the supply of illicit drugs across New South Wales.
During their investigation, detectives identified a “sophisticated online drug distribution network” operating from the South Coast.
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Officers executed five search warrants yesterday, allegedly seizing officers recovered 2.5kg of white powder, 200g of MDMA, more than 100,000 LSD tabs and a significant quantity of Xanax made to “look like candy”.
Sophisticated computer equipment, a significant quantity of cash and several vehicles including a Maserati and a Mercedes-Benz were also seized.
Police will allege in court that the man was operating as on online vendor on the dark web, selling prohibited drugs and prescription medications.
An initial analysis of the vendor crypto-currency wallets indicates that more than $17 million has been transacted in recent years.
“This is probably the first and largest penetration of the dark web in Australia and it’s resulted in taking out a syndicate who have dealt around $17 million of drugs across the nation,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith said at a press conference on Friday.
All three are charged with large commercial drug distribution offences and were refused bail to appear at Nowra Local Court today.