Nowadays, it is easy for anyone to purchase drugs over the Internet. Not only are adults getting their hands on illegal substances, but children and teenagers also manage to get hold of dangerous drugs sold for profit over the Internet and by other means. It doesn't seem to occur to them that they are committing a federal criminal offense.
This was the case recently when a teenager in Indiana was going online to buy Ecstasy, a form of methamphetamine. Because the teenager is 14 years old, he is currently being held in a juvenile detention center. The drugs were discovered by his mother when two boxes were delivered to her house and she became suspicious. She discovered the first box in the mail and opened it to find the drugs inside. She then took the drugs and her son to the police to turn them in, despite protests from her son. The boxes of drugs have a return address of Portland, Oregon.
The unusual aspect of this case is the source of the drugs. He bought them from a growing, unnamed online site called "Silk Road - The anonymous marketplace." It will be almost impossible for police to locate the person (or organization) that sold the drugs to the teenager because of the website's anonymity. The dark net, which is also referred to as "dot-Onion," has a domain that contains no traceable dot-com websites. This anonymous online portal makes it very easy for a person to buy or sell drugs without consequences.
However, the criminals are always caught eventually. With the growing awareness of this particular method of obtaining illegal substances, the authorities are increasingly concentrating on investigating the online activities and they are having a lot of success tracking down and convicting criminals.
In the case in Indiana, the teenager was charged with attempted possession of a controlled substance and placed in a juvenile facility. If a resident of Portland, Oregon, has been charged with a federal crime, particularly in an adult court, the repercussions may be severe. Therefore, it is essential to raise all possible defenses.
Source: rtv6abc, "Fishers teen admits buying drugs on 'Dark Net,' hidden online market," Stephen Dean, May 3, 2013