Utah has once again grabbed headlines on Darknet related news, as a man faces a life sentence for running a store on the Darknet that distributes illicit drugs to buyers.
28 years old, Aaron Shamon, pleaded not guilty to several criminal counts, but he may be sentenced to a life imprisonment if found guilty.
According to a source, Shamon made about $2.8 million within a year for distributing fake prescription drugs to buyers on the Darknet marketplace.
Aaron was a sample of several people in Utah who dealt in drugs on the Darknet marketplace, and most of them have been arrested.
Recently, the Drug Enforcement Administration and Sean Reyes, the Utah Attorney General formed a task force to take down drug smuggling in Utah. This was formed following the high drug overdose that has arisen in Utah.
The DEA agent in charge, Brian Besser, after seizing many drugs said: “This heroin comes up from the source country, it gets stepped down or cut down … into .1 gram dosage units, which is typically what, is found down around the shelter area,” Besser said. “That’s a lot of heroin, and I translate heroin into lives. So that’s a lot of lives, in my opinion, that have been saved.”
The Utah authorities conducted a search in Mr. Shamon’s home located in Cottonwood Height, which led to the seizure of around 500,000 pills. Among the items found after the search were guns, an anti-anxiety drug, painkiller oxycodone, a pill that was made to look like Xanax and around $1 million.
The Federal prosecutors have said the drug found was fentanyl. Fentanyl opioid has resulted in many overdose deaths in Utah, and authorities are still investigating the possible deaths that have been caused by these it.
Drugs trafficked from the Darknet to the streets of Utah seem to cause higher deaths than gun violence. Utah was ranked the 4th highest state to record overdose death some years back. Over 300 people were recorded to have lost their lives in the overdose prescription drugs since 2014.
The prescription drug overdose coordinator, Angela Stander believes that the abusers get these drugs from family and friends: “We’re finding that a majority of people who are abusing them, and ultimately overdosing, are getting them from family and friends. The ease of access is one of the biggest issues here,” said Stander.
The ease of access which arises from the anonymous Darknet marketplace source makes it difficult to fight vendors, but few are being exposed by an investigation of the task force.
On Thursday, Attorney Michael Gadd, Special Assistant U.S. said that at least one of the dozen people who were a part of the drug dealings will be charged.
Authorities believe that the legal dealings of these Darknet drug sellers are expected to scare off the other fatal drug distributors, which will, in the long run, reduce the higher number of overdoses recorded.
According to reports, four other people have been charged with sending packaged drugs through the U.S Postal Service to buyers. They also pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Opioid crises have reverberated in Utah and beyond in recent years, and a vast amount of this dangerous drugs emanate from the Darknet marketplace due to how easy it is to deliver them by mail.
It is estimated that drug overdose accounts for the higher death in America are ages below 50. In the 2016 report, the annual drug overdose death was expected to be the largest ever recorded, exceeding 59,000 in the United States of America. A recent report states that America leads the high drug overdose death rate. The report states that America has 4% of the world population, which accounts for 27% of the world drug overdose.
A research proves that 17,000 people died of drug overdoses in America in 1999, but there was an unpredicted rise to 52,000 in 2015.
The spokesman for the DEA, Rusty Payne said to reporters that “Think of Dodger Stadium, seats more people than just about anybody. Fill that whole place, pack it with people. We lost more people to drug overdoses than you can squeeze into Dodger Stadium, than in all 50 states in one year. That is extraordinary.”
The authorities in Utah have been very serious to arrest the drug suppliers by which most of them operate from the Darknet marketplace.