Italian authorities revealed how a 34-year-old known only as “M.F.” in the press had almost avoided arrest while at the center of a drug trafficking investigation. The man, a former resident of Rome, had allegedly been buying large quantities of drugs on the darknet and then reselling them in ways unknown to the police. Despite the dealer’s best efforts to confuse law enforcement, the San Paolo police eventually caught on to the man’s plan and arrested him in late July.
The case began after Italian authorities intercepted a package that had been shipped to an address registered to nobody, the police revealed. Drug buyers have often used abandoned or otherwise empty homes as temporary drops for purchases. But, the practice stands out so much that in some countries, the postal service keeps an eye out for packages addressed to non-existent people at addresses devoid of life. And this 34-year-old, according to the police, had used the unregistered apartment for more than a temporary drop for darknet drug packages.
After launching a lengthy investigation into the package recipient, the San Paolo police set up surveillance near the address in an attempt to spot someone entering or exiting the residence. Although the case was launched after a package interception, the police still had trouble identifying the so-called “secret house” for one reason or another. At some point during the investigation, Italian law enforcement spotted the suspect a few blocks away from the house. After spotting him, they followed him at length to ensure they had correctly identified the suspect.
After an unknown amount of time under surveillance, the suspect had allegedly discovered that the police had been investigating him. He made an effort to avoid the police and the house that he had allegedly used as a drop for darknet drug orders.
Then one day, the police spotted him near the house. San Paolo police officers stopped the suspected drug dealer and asked him where he had been heading and whether or not he had any association with the house and address in question. The suspect aka “M.F.” gave the police answers to the questions they asked. He told them where he lived and showed them his keys that would prove he lived (or had entry) at an apartment nearby. He had been living at the apartment, officials later confirmed. However, his use of keys as proof he lived elsewhere worked against him. The suspect had kept the keys to the drop with his apartment keys and the police noticed.
With the suspect’s keys, the police entered the house where the package had been heading before interception. The police said they then found themselves “in front of a real store” filled with “assorted narcotics in glass jars.” They found MDMA, ecstasy pills, cocaine, LSD, marijuana, and amphetamine. A police spokesperson said that the drugs were “astonishingly pure.”
The police arrested M.F. for possession with intent to distribute.