U.S. broadcasts worldwide crackdown on DarkNet opioid trafficking


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A world operation focusing on trafficking in opioids on a clandestine a part of the web known as the DarkNet has led to about 150 arrests in the USA and Europe and the seizure of medication, money and weapons, U.S. and European authorities mentioned on Tuesday.

The crackdown, known as Operation Darkish HunTor, was introduced at a U.S. Justice Division information convention the place Deputy U.S Lawyer Normal Lisa Monaco warned our on-line world drug sellers: “There isn’t any darkish web. We are able to and we are going to shed a lightweight.”

Jean-Philippe Lecouffe, deputy director of the worldwide police company Europol, hailed the outcomes of Operation Darkish HunTor as “spectacular.” He mentioned the operation sends a message that “nobody is past the attain of regulation enforcement, even on the darkish internet.” The DarkNet and darkish internet are associated phrases regarding part of the web accessible solely utilizing a specialised internet browser and the assortment of web websites residing there.

An opioid epidemic has claimed the lives of tons of of hundreds of individuals in the USA alone previously twenty years as a consequence of overdoses from prescription painkillers and unlawful substances, constituting a permanent public well being disaster.

The Darkish HunTor operation produced arrests of 150 individuals accused of being drug traffickers and others accused of participating in gross sales of illicit items and companies.

There have been 65 arrests in the USA, 47 in Germany, 24 in the UK, 4 every within the Netherlands and Italy, three in France, two in Switzerland and one in Bulgaria, the Justice Division mentioned.

The division added that the operation resulted in seizures of greater than $31.6 million in money and digital currencies in addition to 45 firearms. It added that about 234 kilograms (515 kilos) of medication together with greater than 200,000 ecstasy, fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone and methamphetamine tablets have been seized, together with counterfeit medicines.

Kenneth Well mannered, head of the Justice Division’s Prison Division, mentioned such trafficking presents “a world menace and it requires a world response.”

The Justice Division mentioned the crackdown constructed on operations carried out in late 2020 and early 2021 to disrupt darkish internet trafficking. It mentioned that in January, a world crackdown focused DarkMarket, the world’s largest darkish internet worldwide market.

(Reporting by Mark Hosenball; Modifying by Will Dunham)

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