Internet drug trafficking skyrockets, experts warn

By Lunar Loops · Sep 11, 2008 · ·
  1. Lunar Loops
    Obviously a slow news day again. This from The Daily Telegraph-UK (article link):

    Internet drug trafficking skyrockets, experts warn

    Drug trafficking on the internet has soared as the medium becomes more commonplace, presenting far more challenges and dangers than traditional trafficking, experts have warned.

    Interpol officers warn that the internet has created a new customer base for drug dealers of people who could almost be persuaded by the sanitised nature of web transactions that they were not doing anything illegal.
    The worldwide policing organisation's Daniel Altmeyer told the World Forum Against Drugs in Stockholm, Sweden: "Buying drugs on the internet is really easy. "You only need an internet cafe, a credit card, and it's done."
    And law enforcement authorities struggle to track down those responsible since the crime is not only conducted at the point of purchase.
    "A website may be hosted in Sweden, but the drug will come from Latin America and will be shipped by boat to South Africa, with dealers spread out across Europe," he said. "It's a global network."
    He said that while there are no statistics available for the number of people buying drugs online, sales have rocketed in the past few years, with most of those buying them being web-savvy and curious users under the age of 30.
    They have access to websites, forums and chatrooms where a link that can provide them with illegal drugs in just a few clicks of a mouse.
    "There's this feeling of being anonymous behind your screen, it doesn't always feel illegal," said Krister Gaefvert, a police inspector in Sweden, a leading country in the fight against internet drug trafficking.
    Another Swedish detective, Cecilia Fant, said that drug trafficking via the web was almost perceived as "a white-collar crime".
    "There's no more Pablo Escobar with handcuffs behind his back," she said.
    But the anonymity of it all presents a big risk, Mr Gaefvert added.
    "With traditional trafficking, you knew your dealer, you knew where the drugs came from. Here, you don't know anything," he said.
    A traditional dealer might also provide information on how much of a certain drug to take, but on the web guidelines can vary dramatically.
    Prescription drugs represent about 90 percent of the illegal substances sold on the internet, he said, while synthetic drugs such as amphetamines and ecstasy, as well as cocaine, cannabis and heroin are easily available.
    "You find a lot of products with some comments from fake specialists and photos of people wearing a white lab coat. The purpose is to look very serious, just to make the client think that he's not doing anything illegal," Mr Gaefvert said.

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  1. Richard_smoker
    can't believe their using this statement to back up their claim... what a damn joke. As if anyone in the traditional media has ever EVER equated local drug dealers with honesty and integrity. :)
  2. MrG
    So if there's no statistics, where are they getting these "facts" from?

    Typical Torygraph Tripe(tm)
  3. Herbal Healer 019
    In articles like these it seems like they always talk about the distrubutors of the drugs being busted but you never see anything about the buyers being busted...with all the online pharmacies, many of which from what SWIM has heard, are legit... very tempting in SWIMs opinion
  4. Richard_smoker
    "legit" is more like, "appears to be legit."

    most online pharmacies that have popped up have been shutdown over the years. many of them could be traced back to a dozen or so owners.

    there were a few loopholes that many of them have used to continue doing business, most of which have been snapped shut; the rug snatched out from under them.

    another thing worth mentioning are the ways these pharmaceuticals have been dished out over recent years (in the US anyways). unless the "pharmacies" are totally outright illegal, (many were/are) and simply invent doctors' names and write their own scripts, then they have used real physicians, dentists, and veterinarians to risk their own DEA#'s in order to make a quick buck.

    the remaining loopholes will be closed up soon enough. -DICK
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