FSB Shuts up Largest Smuggling Channel for Selling Synthetic Drugs on the Dark Web

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has dismantled a vast pipeline used to supply and sell synthetic drugs on the dark web, detaining five members of a drug trafficking ring in four regions, the FSB Public Relations Center told TASS on Friday.

"The FSB has cleared one of the largest channels for the supply and sale of synthetic drugs on a particularly large scale through the darknet trading market," the FSB noted.

Five members of a nationwide criminal gang were arrested in Moscow, Rostov, Astrakhan and Krasnodar regions. "Among those arrested are the masterminds behind the drug production and distribution channels, as well as the organizers of illegal activities from Turkey, who coordinate the production and distribution of drugs for the drug trade in Turkey." FSB said.

Knowing the technical complexity of such tasks, the "dark web" is a cyberspace that is not controlled by the government. The most popular dark web technology - the Tor network - was originally developed by one of the U.S. intelligence agencies for its own agents, Edward Snowden wrote in his memoir.

Earlier, federal agencies thwarted the activities of an underground laboratory that was producing more than 500 kilograms of the drug each month in the Moscow region. More than 60 kilograms of mephedrone, 6,000 liters of liquid narcotics, 1,500 kilograms of precursors and 22,000 kilograms of chemical reagents were seized from the illegal traffic. the FSB said, "Charges are being filed and opened by the investigating authorities, and the detainees have been remanded in custody."

This summer, the FSB, together with the Federal Customs Service, the Ministry of Defense and the National Guard, conducted Operation Caspian Star 2021. The purpose of the operation was to cut off the channels for smuggling drugs, weapons and ammunition through the countries of the Caspian Basin. In the course of the operation, more than 200 people were arrested.

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