A Latvian teenage citizen was arrested and detained by the Border and Customs Police of the States Revenue Authority for allegedly ordering and receiving illegal drug packages procured off the dark web. The illicit packages are believed to have been shipped from the Netherlands and Holland after having been paid for with virtual currencies and delivered through postal services to the suspect’s place of residence.
The 17-year-old Latvian, according to the States Revenue Authority, placed the first dark web illegal order in August 2018. Since then, he is said to have placed over 15 illegal orders which he paid for using bitcoins, most of which were successful. Of the total successful requests, the suspect received nine packages from Holland, and the rest were shipped from the Netherlands.
In a joint investigation between the drug unit and the border and customs police, all packages coming from the Netherlands and Holland were scrutinized further. In the process, more than six parcels, most of which came from Holland, were confiscated. They had all been sent to the suspect’s home address.
According to the investigating detectives, the young man used an informative video to open an electronic wallet for bitcoin, to shop for drugs, and to place his order. He shopped for marijuana and party pills on the famous ‘Dream market’, an online dark web marketplace, and provided his home address for delivery.
Following the investigation lead, the detectives executed a sanctioned raid at the suspect’s place of residence where packed marijuana and hashish were seized before he was arrested.
Children on the Dark Web
The arrest of the Latvian teenager comes barely two months after the Nation Crime Agency (NCA) warned parents about the increased involvement of children and students in illicit dark web affairs. More and more teenagers are said to be getting oriented into the dark web through instructive videos that promise recruitment for dark web jobs with “easy money” paid in virtual currencies. In the videos, their privacy and anonymity from law enforcers are assured by the instructors, making it easier for the children to give in.
The NCA, which is tasked with combating organized crime, has been advising parents, homeowners, and employers to be on the lookout for suspicious home deliveries. The advice came shortly after numerous home addresses were found on a dark web drug vendor’s customer database which was seized by the agency.
Steve Welsh, who is in charge of the NCA’s dark web division, told parents to ask questions whenever they notice an influx of packages derived to their children. “Parents should also talk to their children, especially on morals values. These dark web criminals are enticing our children with money before they recruit and hook them into illegal and criminal gangs,” Welsh said.
Mr. Welsh also highlighted the new trend by dark web vendors to have items delivered in packages and boxes indicating completely different and unrelated products. “We have seen in several cases drugs being delivered in DVD boxes,” he warned, “Guns are also shipped in their dissembled form, with different parts in different packages accompanied by a manual on how to assemble the pieces.”
“The sophistication and easy access to the booming dark web markets means that parents must be vigilant due to the exposure of the recent high-risk trend. Let’s all do what we must to protect our children,” he concluded.