Updated On: 15.09.2020
Nineteen-year-old Anthony Byrnes who was busted by the Law Enforcement in 2019, has been sentenced to 71-months of imprisonment on a drug conspiracy charge. Besides, the court imposed four years of supervised release clause on him after pleading guilty to conspiring with a regional trafficking narcotics organization to distribute drugs purchased on the dark web.
According to the earlier press released by the Justice Department, Byrnes faced multiple drug-related charges in addition to the drug conspiracy charge which could have led him to a heavy term of imprisonment of not less than 40 years, but he somehow managed to sail through.
In August 2019, the law enforcement intercepted a parcel suspected to contain narcotics. According to the court document, the package was mailed from Slovenia to the residence of the teenager in Huntersville. In the light of this, authorities conducted a controlled delivery of the parcel and saw Byrnes coming out of his residence to pick them and heading back to the underlined address.
The law enforcement went back for an official search warrant to execute an order at his residence that led to the discovery of marijuana, 4500 Xanax pills, MDMA/ecstasy, 1000 hits of LSD, drug paraphernalia, and other narcotics. Also, two firearms were seized in his residence. The court document further stated that Byrnes purchased the confiscated drugs on the defunct Empire Market and made payments in Bitcoin.
A further investigation claims he mainly used Bitcoin ATM machines located in Charlotte to make almost all his drug transactions. It was said that there was an earlier infraction in April 2019 that saw authorities seizing more trafficking narcotics and a firearm from him. In total, three firearms were discovered in his possession. The search also led to the recovery of $13,800 in cash suspected to be the proceeds of trafficking narcotics.
As claimed by reports, Byrnes arranged the drugs purchased on the dark web to be shipped to a regional drug trafficking organization. Another source claims the teenager admitted to receiving at least a parcel every one or three days.
Byrne said that he gave the packages of drugs to anyone ready to pay him, and sold some to his customers. When asked about the guns, he said he keeps them for his safety as he held a large quantity of drugs in his residence. The authorities revealed that they barely come across such a large quantity of drugs in Huntersville.
A concerned neighbour said to reporters that Byrne had to be distributing some of the drugs in the neighbourhood and the places where he hung out. L.T Brian Vaughan also stated that he was not sure whether Byrnes targeted the teenagers. However, he can be confident that parents can put such things under control if they know what their kids are doing and what has been going on around them. It is believed that the anonymity of the dark web provides shields that make it comfortable for teenagers and even children below 18 years to make orders.
On the authority of the report published by the Justice Department, Byrnes was charged with “drug trafficking conspiracy which goes with a minimum sentence of 10 years; possession with intent to distribute psilocin which carries 20 years minimum sentence; possession with intent to distribute marijuana which goes with a minimum prison term of 5 years; possession with the intent to distribute LSD which goes with a minimum sentence of 10 years; possession with intent to distribute DMT which goes with a minimum sentence of 20 years; and a double counts of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime which goes with a minimum prison sentence of 5 years.”
Law enforcement has come out with diverse ways of uncovering the individuals behind the dark web drug trafficking and related crimes. The most commonly used strategy is the interception of suspected parcels by the US Customs and Border Protection. In other cases, they go undercover on the dark web to negotiate deals in a bid to get a piece of personal information from the target to trace his location. There are many cases of law enforcement officials disguising themselves as vendors or even buyers on the dark web to bring targets to the light.
Drugs among teenagers have been a reason to worry. In 2019, the largest drug seizure ever in South Australia was linked to a teenager called Brenton Mackenzie 18. He purchased drugs on the dark web and even attempted for trafficking narcotics of 20,000 LSD tabs. The drugs at his disposal had a street value of around $300,000 according to the court documents.
Detective Chief Inspector Tony Crameri said the drugs are hazardous ones that can have a long-term effect on the health of the users. He said the leading cause for concern lies with the fact that the manufacturers are only interested in their profits rather than the health of the users.
Source: News Maven
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