DeepDotWeb Administrator Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering Conspiracy

DeepDotWeb Administrator Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering Conspiracy for receiving over $8 million in kickbacks from purchases of fentanyl, firearms, and other contraband on Darknet marketplaces.

DeepDotWeb Administrator Pleads Guilty

An Israeli national pleaded guilty today for his role in operating DeepDotWeb (DDW), a website that connected internet users with Darknet marketplaces, where they purchased illegal firearms, malware and hacking tools, stolen financial data, heroin and fentanyl, and other contraband.

According to court documents, Tal Prihar, 37, an Israeli citizen residing in Brazil, owned and operated DDW along with co-defendant Michael Phan, 34, of Israel, beginning in October 2013. In addition to providing general information about the Darknet, DDW provided users with direct links to illegal Darknet marketplaces, which are not accessible through traditional search engines. For providing these links, Prihar and Phan received kickback payments from the marketplaces in the form of virtual currency, including approximately 8,155 bitcoins (worth approximately $8.4 million based on the bitcoin trading value at the time of the transactions). To conceal the nature and source of these illegal kickback payments, Prihar transferred the payments from his DDW bitcoin wallet to other bitcoin accounts and to bank accounts he controlled in the names of shell companies. DDW was seized by federal authorities in April 2019, and Prihar has agreed to forfeit $8,414,173.

“Tal Prihar served as a broker for illegal Darknet marketplaces — helping such marketplaces find customers for fentanyl, firearms, and other dangerous contraband — and profited from the illegal business that ensued,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “This prosecution, seizure of the broker website, and forfeiture send a clear message that we are not only prosecuting the administrators of Darknet marketplaces offering illegal goods and services, but we will also bring to justice those that aim to facilitate and profit from them.” 

“Tal Prihar today acknowledged his leadership role in operating a web site that served as a gateway to numerous dark web marketplaces selling fentanyl, heroin, firearms, hacking tools and other illegal goods,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman for the Western District of Pennsylvania. “Mr. Prihar and his codefendant extracted a fee from each customer routed to these illegal sites, profiting in the millions of dollars.”

“For six years, DeepDotWeb was a gateway to facilitate the illegal purchase of items to include dangerous drugs, weapons, and malicious software,” said Acting Special Agent in Charge Carlton Peeples of the FBI’s Pittsburgh Field Office. “Prihar profited as a byproduct from other people’s dangerous transactions and today’s guilty plea sends a message to other cyber actors across the globe who think the dark web is a safe haven. The FBI works with our local, state, federal and international partners regularly to dismantle illicit websites and go after those responsible for them.”

Prihar pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 2, and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The FBI’s Pittsburgh Field Office is investigating the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Lieber Smolar of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania and Trial Attorneys C. Alden Pelker of the Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section and Alexander Gottfried of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section are prosecuting the case.

The department thanks the French authorities as well as its law enforcement colleagues at the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, IRS, Brazilian Federal Police Cyber Division, Israeli National Police, Dutch National Police, Europol Darkweb Team, Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany, and National Crime Agency in the United Kingdom. Significant assistance was provided by the Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs.

This case was brought in conjunction with the Joint Criminal Opioid and Darknet Enforcement (J-CODE) Team. Established within the FBI’s Hi-Tech Organized Crime Unit, J-CODE is a U.S. Government initiative announced in January 2018, aimed at targeting drug trafficking, especially fentanyl and other opioids, on the Darknet. The J-CODE team brings together agents, analysts and professional staff with expertise in drugs, gangs, health care fraud and more. J-CODE entities, including the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, Department of Defense, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and Department of Justice focus on disrupting the sale of drugs via the Darknet and dismantling criminal enterprises that facilitate this trafficking.

This prosecution also is a result of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles high-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten communities throughout the United States. OCDETF uses a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.

DeepDotWeb Administrator Pleads Guilty DOJ press release can be found here

See also: Interview with DeepDotWeb admin from behind bars.

Teen who hired a hitman on dark web to kill his father sentenced to life

A teen from Finland who hired a hitman on dark web to kill his father has been sentenced to life in prison. A Finnish court on Friday sentenced a two men for actively taking a part in the contract killing of one of the men’s father, arranged via the dark web.

Teen who Hired a hitman
Image: Dailymail

District court of Pirkanmaa, Finland, found Aatu Viljami Halonen, 20, guilty of soliciting murder and Mika Markus Aleksi Hytönen ,19, guilty of carrying out the act.

The case marked Finland’s first murder-for-hire trial that was arranged online and the fourth hired killing conviction in the country in two decades.

In January 2020, Tampere police found the body of a 44-year-old man in his home, after his neighbors reported an assault taking place outside between the killer and the victim.

After arresting the suspect, police uncovered evidence the case was in fact a contract killing, ordered by the victim’s son.

Hytönen confessed to having killed the victim but claimed that he only intended to rob him. The court heard that he told his fiancé he had fantasised about taking another person’s life for some time.

In 2019, Hytönen posted an ad on the Tor internet network—which facilitates anonymous and encrypted online communication—offering his services as a hit man, asking to be paid in Bitcoin.

Hytönen turned Halonen into police. According to the prosecution, the motive for the hit was possibly financial, but its roots lay in the victim’s treatment of the defendant as a child.

The fee for the killing, said to be 10,000 euros, was to be paid from the inheritance left behind by the victim. Through his lawyer Tomi Borgenström, Halonen continues to deny his part in his father’s homicide, claiming to have been framed.

The sentencing took place nine months after Pirkanmaa District Court found then-19-year-old Hytönen guilty of murder, and 20-year-old Halonen guilty of soliciting murder. Both were ordered to undergo psychological evaluations at the time. The results were presented in court Friday morning, and both defendants were found fit to stand trial.

The verdict and sentences can still be appealed.

Vaccine Passports are now being sold on darknet markets

Vaccine Passports are now being sold on many popular darknet markets – According to many news sources like BBC and Independent vaccine passports are now being offered for sale on some popular darknet markets. After doing in depth investigation we learned that Agatha Market is one of those markets where you can find listings for vaccine doses and passports.

Vaccine Passports

While the global roll-out of COVID-19 vaccinations continues to accelerate, it’s worth remembering that only around 1% of the world’s population have received their full course of injections. Billions are still waiting for their first dose, which inevitably leads those people to question exactly when they will get it.  Especially as plans are being made internationally to allow those that have been vaccinated, or can prove they have had a recent negative test, the freedom to travel to other countries, attend large-scale events, take a new job, and more.

So there’s a strong and growing demand for vaccinations and test results because of the greater freedoms they will give to people.  And of course, there will always be people who don’t want to wait for their official vaccination, or for an official negative test result – and shady people willing to service that demand.  Back in January, we reported how there were hundreds of advertisements on the dark net were advertising COVID-19 vaccines for sale from $500 – and now the number of adverts has more than tripled to over 1,200.  Further, vendors are also offering a range of fake vaccination certificates and negative test results to people who need proof of either says on CheckPoint blog.

Is this safe? Vaccine passports and doses listings on Agartha Market are fake listings offered by scam vendors. We already did our own investigation into this market which can be found here. Agartha Market is at this time of writing down due to bug which allow skilled hackers to create fake orders and then refund them, stealing approximately 13 BTC out of market wallet, according to the admin statement on Agartha market forums.

DEA 2020 Report Highlights the Dark Web and Bitcoin

DEA 2020 Report Highlights the Dark Web and Bitcoin – The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) released an annual 2020 Drug report called – National Drug Threat Assessment, DEA’s annual publication outlining the threats posed to the United States by domestic and international drug trafficking and the abuse of illicit drugs. In their 2020 Drug report, DEA among others highlighted Dark Web and Bitcoin.

DEA 2020 Report

“This year’s report shows the harsh reality of the drug threats facing communities across the United States,” said Acting Administrator Evans. “While the COVID-19 pandemic plagues this nation, so, too, do transnational criminal organizations and violent street gangs, adjusting to pandemic restrictions to flood our communities with dangerous drugs. DEA and our local, state, and federal partners continue to adapt to the ever changing landscape, remaining focused on the current threats and looking to the horizon for emerging threats. We will always defend the American people against illicit substances that ruin lives, devastate families, and destroy communities”, said DEA acting administrator D. Christopher Evans.

Drugs trends in the United States continue to evolve. While fentanyl and fentanyl analogues from China have decreased substantially following the DEA’s 2018 emergency scheduling action of fentanyl related substances and China’s enactment of fentanyl-class controls in May 2019, the opioid threat remains at epidemic levels, affecting large portions of the country. Meanwhile, the stimulant threat, including methamphetamine and cocaine, is worsening both in volume and reach, with traffickers selling increasing amounts outside of traditional markets.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 83,000 people lost their lives to drug-related overdoses in the twelve-month period ending in July of 2020, a significant increase from 2019, when more than 70,000 people died of overdoses.

2020 NDTA findings of note:

  • Mexican Transnational Criminal Organizations (TCOs) remain the greatest criminal drug threat in the United States.
  • Illicit fentanyl is one of the primary drugs fueling the epidemic of overdose deaths in the United States, while heroin and prescription opioids remain significant challenges to public health and law enforcement.
  • Mexican cartels are increasingly responsible for producing and supplying fentanyl to the U.S. market. China remains a key source of supply for the precursor chemicals that Mexican cartels use to produce the large amounts of fentanyl they are smuggling into the United States.  
  • Drug-poisoning deaths and seizures involving methamphetamine have risen sharply as Mexican TCOs increase the drug’s availability and expand the domestic market.
  • Constraints associated with the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic – daily travel restrictions, U.S. border closings, closure of nonessential businesses, and broad shelter-in-place orders – temporarily posed new challenges to criminal organizations’ movement of drugs during the first half of 2020.

The National Drug Threat Assessment provides a yearly assessment of the challenges communities face related to drug abuse and drug trafficking. Highlights in the report include usage and trafficking trends for drugs such as prescription drugs, heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, and hundreds of synthetic drugs. New to this year’s report is the effect of COVID-19 during the first part of 2020.

The assessment gathers information from many data sources, such as drug investigations and seizures, drug purity, laboratory analysis, information on transnational and domestic criminal groups, and U.S. government drug cultivation and production estimates.

The National Drug Threat Assessment can be read in fully here

BitPharma Reviews – Scam or Not? Legit Alternative Links

BitPharma Reviews – SCAM OR NOT? – Bit Pharma is like Peoples drug store one of the oldest traditional deep web drugs vendor, probably operated by the same group of people. BitPharma can be found at http://s5q54hfww56ov2xc.onion onion link which can be accessed only via Tor Browser. We have been receiving a lot of emails over the years about this store with a lot of customers complaining that they have been scammed. We decided to do full investigation into this vendor shop and bring you a full and honest review and hopefully help and save someone from being scammed.

BitPharma Reviews

BitPharma Reviews

The store is quite easy to navigate and simply to understand. It accepts only Bitcoin as a form of payment. It has been established for probably 6,7 years according to many credible sources. Links for this store can be found on many Uncensored Hidden Wiki directories. In order to buy from this store you need to register first. They offer cocaine, speed, crystal meth, MDMA, LSD, Oxy, Ketamine among others. Checking their FAQ page you can’t really learn much, there is no general shipping information, refund policy and so on.

SCAM OR NOT?

Is BitPharma a scam? YES, bit pharma is a scam website being operated by the same group of people who operate TorShops, Brain Magic, People’s Drug Store and many more. There are a huge number of scam complaints on private darknet drug forums, reddit groups and link directories. According to some source they was legit a couple of years ago before exit-scamming and wasting user funds. While we can not verify this, Bit Pharma is a scam website.

Final Word

Have you tried this service? Have you ordered something from them before? Share your experience with us in the comments section below in order to help and prevent others from being scammed.

THE PEOPLES DRUG STORE Reviews – Scam or not? Alternative Links

THE PEOPLES DRUG STORE Reviews – SCAM OR NOT? The People’s Drug Store is probably one of the oldest dark web drug shops in existence. It’s dating back to original Silk Road and it’s been covered by a number of prominent Youtuber’s as well as some news sources. But is this website really legit? That’s what we are gonna found out in today’s article.

THE PEOPLES DRUG STORE

THE PEOPLES DRUG STORE REVIEW

The People Drug Store is a dark web drug shop operating on Tor Network. It has been in existence for at least 7 years according to various Reddit Sources. They offer a wide range of drugs that anyone can buy anonymously using Bitcoin. Their address can be found at –http://newpdsuslmzqazvr.onion – They are currently offering Heroin, Speed, Ecstasy, Cocaine, Cannabis and Prescription drugs. It’s necessary to register on their website before you can purchase.

SCAM OR NOT?

THE PEOPLES DRUG STORE is a known scam. They have been operating the many exact same websites (like BitPharma, EUCanna and others) that we will cover in next articles. One of the first obvious sign is that you can not contact their admins or support team before purchasing, it says that you need to purchase first. After purchasing, according to various credible sources, you will still have that same message. They apparently offer Escrow but it’s obviously controlled by them since they are not a market but rather traditional vendor shop. Everyday we can see at least two or three complaints on them on various reddit groups, forums and dark web websites.

Final word

People’s drug store is a SCAM website and everyone should avoid it. They have been scamming customers for years without delivering any of their products. Let us know in the comments about your experience with them. If you have been scammed by them share it with us and other possible customers in the comments below.

If you need any alternative legit dark net drug stores, don’t forget to check out our Markets and Shop page.

Hidden Wiki – thehiddenwiki.org Alternatives 2021

Hidden Wiki – thehiddenwiki website, usually knows as HiddenWiki was a number of old dark web MediaWiki websites that operated as Tor Hidden Services that could be anonymously edited after registering on the website. The main purpose of the website is to serve as a directory of links for the dark web. While this worked in the DRP era, current Hidden Wiki websites are mostly scams and in today’s article we are going to cover one of the newer and best legit alternative to Hidden Wiki in 2021.

Hidden Wiki

Hidden Wiki Alternatives 2021

HiddenIndex.org is a new and fast growing Dark Web directory listing created by a group known only by their pseudonym – “The Architects”. After quick investigation we decided to write an article about them and introduce them to everyone who is in a need of legit and PGP verified darknet markets links that are updated in real time.

About them (In their own words)

Welcome to HiddenIndex.org. We are a Tor network dark web directory listing created in order to monitor and study popular darknet marketplaces. This website is made for research information only. We do not vouch for any website. No endorsements are made regarding any sites listed here.

All websites listed here are trusted and verified by darknet community. As soon as there is any scam alert or some other sort of warning we will remove the website from this directory and disable the redirect. By using our directory you can access darknet markets in a safe and easy way. You don’t need to copy long .onion addresses, just by clicking on one of the mirror and you will be redirected to a safe and PGP verified link.

Final word

Hidden Index is probably one of the best and easiest to use dark web listing directory in 2021. It’s safe, secure and all links are PGP verified in order to avoid phishing. Their directory is updated in real time so you will always an easy way to access your favorite Tor .onion website.

Let us know in the comments about this website and don’t forget to check out our other articles here.

How to buy Monero (XMR) in 2021 – Beginner’s Guide

How to Buy Monero (XMR) in 2021 is a beginner’s guide that will teach you what is Monero, how to use it and where to buy it. Monero has become a lot more popular recently in the Dark Net scene due to it’s privacy features it offers to people. XMR by default can not be tracked and fee’s it has made him a great alternative to Bitcoin. In today’s tutorial I will give you a brief overview of what Monero is so you can understand it better before using it as a payment option.

How to Buy Monero

How to Buy Monero (XMR) in 2021 – Quick Guide

If you want to buy Monero fast without reading the rest of the article, please follow the below steps:

  1. Get a Monero Wallet (Official Monero GUI Wallet, MyMonero Wallet, Cake Wallet)
  2. Obtain your Monero address and copy it
  3. Go to Kraken and sign up (verification may be needed)
  4. (OPTIONAL STEP) If Kraken does not work for you, try LocalMonero
  5. Deposit fiat money and buy XMR
  6. Withdrawn Monero to your chosen wallet (step 1)

If you want to learn more about Monero and it’s privacy and possible other alternatives, please keep reading.

What is Monero?

According to Wikipedia Monero is a privacy-focused cryptocurrency released in 2014 by Nicolas van Saberhagen. It is an open-source protocol based on CryptoNote. It uses an obfuscated public ledger, meaning anyone can send or broadcast transactions, but no outside observer can tell the source, amount, or destination. Monero uses different privacy-enhancing technologies to achieve anonymity and fungibility. It has attracted users desiring privacy measures that are not provided in more popular cryptocurrencies. However, it has also gained publicity for illicit use in darknet markets.

What if I can’t buy Monero directly?

If you can’t obtain Monero directly from Kraken or LocalMonero because it may not be available to you for some reason, you can buy Litecoin (LTC) and then exchange it to Monero in CakeWallet. You can also buy Bitcoin (BTC) and exchange it to Monero, but Litecoin has much lower fees so you will end up saving a bit of money doing it this way.

Why use Monero over BTC?

BTC transactions are stored in public ledger and can be easily tracked by someone determined with enough resources like Law Enforcement Agencies for example. If you really value your privacy you should use Monero (XMR). One of the other reasons is that Monero has cheap and fast transactions. Vast majority of transactions cost less than 0.01 – 0.03 USD per transaction.

Final word

Monero is one of a few crypto-currencies that actually have a value and that value is the privacy it offers to it’s customers. Monero has proven itself overtime to be useful.

We hope this article helped you understand what is Monero and how to buy it. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below.

Dark Market Seized, admin arrested

UPDATE: If you’re looking for a new darknet market to shop for, don’t forget to visit HiddenIndex.org a new and fast growing darknet Tor Directory with live updated links for top deep web marketplaces.

Dark Market Seized, admin ARRESTED – DarkMarket, the world’s largest illegal marketplace on the dark web, has been taken offline in an international operation involving Germany, Australia, Denmark, Moldova, Ukraine, the United Kingdom (the National Crime Agency), and the USA (DEA, FBI, and IRS). Europol supported the takedown with specialist operational analysis and coordinated the cross-border collaborative effort of the countries involved.

Dark Market seized
Dark Market seizure banner

DarkMarket in figures:

  • almost 500 000 users;
  • more than 2 400 sellers
  • over 320 000 transactions;
  • more than 4 650 bitcoin and 12 800 monero transferred.

At the current rate, this corresponds to a sum of more than €140 million. The vendors on the marketplace mainly traded all kinds of drugs and sold counterfeit money, stolen or counterfeit credit card details, anonymous SIM cards and malware.

The Central Criminal Investigation Department in the German city of Oldenburg arrested an Australian citizen who is the alleged operator of DarkMarket near the German-Danish border over the weekend. The investigation, which was led by the cybercrime unit of the Koblenz Public Prosecutor’s Office, allowed officers to locate and close the marketplace, switch off the servers and seize the criminal infrastructure – more than 20 servers in Moldova and Ukraine supported by the German Federal Criminal Police office (BKA).

The stored data will give investigators new leads to further investigate moderators, sellers, and buyers.

The American FBI, DEA narcotics law enforcement division and IRS tax authority took part in the probe along with their German colleagues. 

The investigation also involved police from Australia, Britain, Denmark, Switzerland, Ukraine and Moldova, with Europol playing a ‘coordinating role’.

More info can be found on Europol website – here

Darknet Meth and Fent dealer sentenced to 120 months in prison

Darknet Meth and Fent dealer from Rochester, New Hampshire has been sentenced to 120 months for drug trafficking and gun offenses – James M. Nesbitt, 44, of Rochester, was sentenced to 120 months in federal prison on Friday for participating in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and fentanyl and possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, United States Attorney Scott W. Murray announced today.

Darknet Meth and Fent

  According to court documents and statements made in court, Nesbitt conspired with two other individuals to possess with the intent to distribute, and to distribute, fentanyl and crystal “ice” methamphetamine.  On November 7, 2018, the New Hampshire State Police (“NHSP”) conducted a vehicle stop of Nesbitt’s vehicle and seized fentanyl, methamphetamine, and other drugs. Later the same evening, the NHSP and the DEA searched Nesbitt’s hotel room in Ossipee and seized approximately 171 grams of methamphetamine, smaller quantities of fentanyl and other narcotics, and a semi-automatic handgun. On December 20, 2018, DEA agents arrested Nesbitt and a co-conspirator at their Rochester residence and seized fentanyl and four firearms and assorted ammunition.

Nesbitt previously pleaded guilty on March 6, 2020.  Nesbitt’s co-conspirators Haley Hansler and William McKay both have pleaded guilty. Hansler was sentenced to 60 months on April 28, 2020 and McKay is awaiting sentencing.

“Armed drug traffickers are a menace to everyone,” said U.S. Attorney Murray.  “The hazards posed by drug dealers are greatly enhanced when they carry guns while selling their dangerous wares.  In order to keep the Granite State safe, we will continue to work closely with all of our law enforcement partners to identify, prosecute, and incarcerate the armed drug dealers who jeopardize the health and safety of our citizens.”

“Drugs and guns are a deadly combination,” said Special Agent in Charge Brian D. Boyle.  “DEA is committed to bring to justice poly-drug traffickers like Mr. Nesbitt.  This investigation demonstrates the strength of collaborative law enforcement efforts in New Hampshire.” 

This case was supported by the Department of Justice’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF).  OCDETF was established in 1982 to conduct comprehensive, multilevel attacks on major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations and is the keystone of the Department of Justice’s drug reduction strategy.  Today, OCDETF combines the resources and expertise of its member federal agencies in cooperation with state and local law enforcement.  The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking organizations, transnational criminal organizations, and money laundering organizations that present a significant threat to the public safety, economic, or national security of the United States.

This case was investigated by the DEA’s Tactical Diversion Squad, the New Hampshire State Police, the United States Postal Inspection Service, and the Strafford County Drug Task Force. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Cole Davis.

Darknet Meth and Fent dealer sentenced to 120 months in prison – press release by Department of Justice can be found here