According to recently unsealed cases in the Eastern District of Tennessee, a drug dealer known as “Molly Poppins” pleaded guilty to buying drugs off dark web marketplaces and selling them at music festivals in the United States. He faces up to 40 years in federal prison for his MDMA and LSD distribution operation that lasted more than a year.
Graham Mitchell Clark, known to his customers and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation as “Molly Poppins,” pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute MDMA (aka “Molly”) and one count of possession with intent to distribute LSD. According to a criminal information filed after Clark’s arrest, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Manchester Police Department had tracked Clark at least one year as they received reports of a drug dealer known as “Molly Poppins” selling psychedelic substances at various music festivals in Tennessee.
The United States Postal Inspection Service played a role not unlike the role played in other dark web drug buyer busts. The court documents did not clarify whether or not investigators had identified Clark as Molly Poppins prior to the discovery that he had been purchasing his supply of MDMA and LSD from dark web market vendors. Although buying drugs from the dark web and flipping them on the street or in person is not an unusual practice, Clark’s drug trafficking operation stood out to both the media and Tennessee law enforcement agencies due to the uniqueness of a drug dealer flipping dark web drugs at some of the largest music festivals in the United States (while being known only as Molly Poppins).
It is possible that hundreds of drug dealers operate similarly. And it is highly unlikely that other drug dealers who sell at music festivals have not used dark web markets in an effort to obtain bulk psychoactive substances at the lowest possible price. And music festivals are often filled with drug dealers. Clark, perhaps, may be unique in that he is the first systematic music festival dealer who utilized dark web markets and kept federal and state law enforcement agencies chasing a pseudonym.
While undercover at Bonnaroo in 2017, a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation special agent conducted an undercover purchase from Clark. At the time, though, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation had only learned Clark’s nickname and that he had been selling at music festivals for years. His identity remained a mystery until an unknown date during the investigation. A seizure of LSD and MDMA headed to Clark likely sent the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation in the right direction, but the documents did not specify whether or not the United States Postal Inspection Service’s role in the investigation was the role that contributed to the capture of the entity known as Molly Poppins.
In his plea agreement, Clark admitted that he had purchased MDMA and LSD from a dark web marketplace with an unspecified cryptocurrency. He also admitted committing the crimes listed in the two-count criminal information filed shortly after his arrest at Bonnaroo. After arresting Clark, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and local authorities located Clark’s vehicle, searched it, and had the vehicle impounded. Inside the vehicle, court documents revealed, officers discovered roughly a half-pound of MDMA and “five grams of LSD.” LSD is usually weighed in a way that includes the weight of both the LSD and medium hosting the LSD. In most cases, this means that law enforcement will weigh the blotters and charge a suspect with the weight of the blotters.
A judge in a Chattanooga court accepted Clark’s plea deal in late August. Supplemental documents have also been filed but the prosecution moved to have the documents sealed. The judge sealed the documents and requested a pre-sentence report from the Probation Office. Clark is ordered to return to court for sentencing on November 30, 2018. He faces a maximum sentence of 40 years in a maximum security prison. As with all cases of this nature, the actual sentence will be fewer years than the maximum allowed under the federal sentencing guidelines.