An international effort from law enforcement targeting darknet narcotic vendors has resulted in more than $31 million worth of cash and crypto being seized from alleged criminals.
According to an announcement from the Department Of Justice (DOJ), Operation Dark HunTor, a joint effort between three continents to disrupt darknet opioid traffickers, saw the arrest of over 150 people.
“Operation Dark HunTor resulted in the seizure of over $31.6 million in both cash and virtual currencies; approximately 234 kilograms (kg) of drugs worldwide including 152.1 kg of amphetamine, 21.6 kg of cocaine, 26.9 kg of opioids, 32.5 kg of MDMA, in addition to more than 200,000 ecstasy, fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methamphetamine pills, and counterfeit medicine ; and 45 firearms.”
The investigation, which lasted 10 months with some components still ongoing, saw arrests in the United States, the Netherlands, Bulgaria, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy and Switzerland.
The DOJ’s statement lists the Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section’s Digital Currency Initiative as one of the partners in the investigation.
Jim Lee, Chief of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation unit (IRS-CI), said that law enforcement agencies are gaining more expertise in tracking crimes facilitated with digital currencies.
“The Darknet no longer provides a concealing cloak for criminals to operate… The expertise of our agents and law enforcement partners helped uncover significant quantities of narcotics and money – both cash and virtual currency – derived from illicit means.”
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