Dark Web Drug Distribution: U.S Army Soldiers Charged


Two U.S Army soldiers, have been arrested and charged with the distribution of MDMA which led to a fatal overdose death of a young woman. Specialist Lagaria Slaughter, one of the culprits, was charged with one count of conspiring to distribute MDMA and LSD in addition to one count of distributing and possessing with intent to distribute MDMA, with both counts carrying a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

Private First Class Tanner Howell, the other culprit, was charged with one count of distributing and possessing with intent to distribute MDMA, which also carries a maximum prison sentence of 20 years. The two U.S Army Soldiers had their operations blown after they sold MDMA to a young woman who overdosed at a rave and died two days later. FBI officials later searched their New York barracks and found over 10 pills of MDMA and 55 doses of LSD.

U.S Army Soldiers

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A criminal complaint against the two U.S Army Soldiers revealed that Specialist Slaughter, bought cocaine, LSD and other illegal substances from the dark web and resold it. Specialist Slaughter, then sold some of the drugs to a confidential informant, without any knowledge of who he was. The criminal informant, however, assured him that, it was for his personal use.

The criminal informant had pled guilty to narcotics trafficking charges and was under an agreement with U.S law enforcement in exchange for a reduced sentence. This criminal informant went back and forth with Specialist Slaughter, buying drugs from him as well as going to ‘meet-ups’ with him, all with Slaughter, still completely in the dark about who the identity of the criminal informant.

According to the criminal complaint, Slaughter and the criminal informant went to a Manhattan nightclub of August 31, last year and met Private First Class Tanner Howell, a U.S Army soldier who was then stationed at Fort Drum  in New York. Howell allegedly purchased over 50 pills of MDMA from Slaughter, the nest day.

The U.S Army soldiers, began dealing in the dark web drugs, as Slaughter according to the complaint, continued to supply Howell with LSD and MDMA, through the criminal informant.  The duo also had the criminal informant selling drugs for them both on and off their military base. Howell, however, sold a couple of MDMA pills as well as ecstasy pills he had bought from Slaughter’s drug dealer to a woman at the Electric Zoo festival.

U.S Army Soldiers

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The young woman allegedly overdosed after taking the pills and was rushed to a Manhattan hospital where she dies two days later. The criminal complaint also stated that, in October last year, Slaughter’s drug dealer and criminal informant, told him about a conversation he had with Howell, concerning the death of the young woman. Specialist Slaughter allegedly ordered the criminal informant to erase any drug-related texts he had with Howell from his phone.

The criminal informant, according to the complaint, handed over all phone records and drug samples he bought from Slaughter to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), on April 24, 2019. This was followed by a search at Slaughter’s Fort Drum barracks, which uncovered several pills of MDMA, psilocybin mushrooms, 55 doses of LSD , and packaging materials.  FBI officials also recovered text messages on Slaughter’s phone, which showed him, striking a deal to sell hundreds of MDMA pills to other U.S Army soldiers on the base.

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, speaking after the arrest stated that “As alleged, Lagaria Slaughter and Tanner Howell supplied the dangerous drug Molly to a young woman, who overdosed and died after using MDMA, ecstasy and other drugs.”  He added that, unfortunately, this was not the first time his office had charged people with the overdose deaths of people at the Electric Zoo festival.

Source: Nation of Change

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