An April 2017 package seizure led to the arrest of two Austrian men responsible for spreading more than two kilograms of amphetamine throughout Austria. The men, Austrian authorities announced, both redistributed Amphetamine ordered from the darknet and cooked their own amphetamine. If not for a botched burglary in Floridsdorf, the dealers could have continued to sell amphetamines without the police right behind them.
Roughly one year ago, Frankfurt Customs intercepted a package of 100 grams of amphetamine. During Cooperation Southeast – Danube Region—a Europol and Eurojust conference that organized authorities from many EU member states—Christian Mader of the Federal Criminal Police Office pointed out that the Frankfurt Customs functioned as a hub for darknet drug trafficking throughout the region. Even in stories covered by DeepDotWeb, the overwhelming majority of non-US darknet busts have involved Frankfurt Customs.
This, for reasons unknown, seems to have the greatest impact on drug trafficking in Austria. Frankfurt Customs seize a package of drugs headed towards an address in Austria and then alert Austrian police. Sometimes the uncannily skilled customs office seizes multiple packages with the same destination before contacting Austria. In most cases, after an initial seizure, Austrian authorities work with their German counterparts to intercept additional packages destined for the same address or person.
In this instance, Austrian authorities knew the name of the intended recipient of the package. The address, however, proved unhelpful. The suspected drug dealer had used a drop address and had seemingly burned it after the package failed to arrive on time. Additional packages, police determined, would not have been shipped to that address. The case went cold.
On November 14, Frankfurt Customs intercepted a package that contained almost one kilogram of amphetamine. It was headed for the same intended recipient of the package intercepted in April 2017. The address, again, proved unhelpful. The recipient had no registered address under his name and the police had no idea where he had been living. Again, the case went cold until April 2018.
Vienna police caught two men after a failed burglary attempt at an undisclosed location in Vienna. The police recognized the name of one of the men. He was the 29-year-old suspected drug dealer. His accomplice, a 24-year-old, had an address associated with his name. The police obtained a search warrant for the house and found exactly what they had hoped to find: evidence of drug possession and distribution. They also found something they had not expected: evidence that the men had been producing amphetamine pills.
The men had containers of more than 600 grams of amphetamine, various containers for storing and transporting amphetamine, an entire lab’s worth of materials and precursors to amphetamine, and also an entire lab. An arrest warrant was issued and the police took both men in for questioning. During an interrogation, both men confessed to Substance Abuse Act violations. The primary suspect said that he had ordered between 15 and 20 packages of amphetamine from the darknet but had only received two out of every three packages.
He admitted that he had also produced 1,400 grams of amphetamine to sell throughout Austria. He said he had charged ten euros per gram. Ultimately, though, the men admittedly got high on their own supply so often that that had personal ingested the majority of the purchased and cooked amphetamine.
Both men are currently in custody facing charges for Substance Abuse Act violations.