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  1. Docta
    How stupid are some people. I honestly can’t fathom it sometimes. A Melbourne man was arrested this week after trying to import drugs into the country that he allegedly purchased on Silk Road, the online, US-based narcotics marketplace. The Australian Federal Police (AFP) have warned Aussies that if they use it, they’ll be caught.

    For those not acquainted with online narcotics marketplace, , all you need to know is that it’s essentially Amazon for drugs. An online black market that anonymises your traffic via use of the TOR network.

    50 bitcoins — anonymous digital currency — could nab you a few tabs of acid from Silk Road, and they’d be posted from the seller right to your doorstep, no problems, and while that’s the theory behind these anonymous narcotics sites, it’s not exactly the case outside the US.

    Following the arrest and charging of the Melbourne guy who used Silk Road (first spotted by CSO), the Australian Federal Police and the Customs and Border Protection Service have warned everyone this week that while traffic on Silk Road may be anonymous, they’ll still be able to see activity once it comes out of the network and drops into the post.

    Peter Sykora is the manager of the AFP’s Crime Operations division, and he’s assured stoners who looking to try Silk Road for themselves will be picked up and charged.

    “Criminals are attempting to exploit the international mail system through online networks, but the recent arrest demonstrates that we are one step ahead of them.

    “The AFP will continue to identify, investigate and prosecute individuals or groups importing narcotics into Australia, including via illicit e-commerce platforms such as Silk Road,” he said.

    Customs and Border Protection’s acting national manager of Cargo And Maritime Targeting branch, Alana Sullivan, said that you’re not as invisible as you think while using Silk Road.

    “Customs and Border Protection along with our partner agencies are committed to targeting and combating this type of illegal activity.

    “Persons who buy or sell through online marketplaces, on so-called ‘anonymous’ networks should understand that they are not guaranteed anonymity,” she added.

    Don’t do drugs, you guys. Go get high on life and all that.



  1. Cash.Nexus
    So Australian police and Customs admit that the ordering and payment system is still secure, as far as they are concerned. The only weak link is when package crosses border...

    The moral of the story is: customers should restrict orders to vendors within their own country's borders. As recommended by AFP and Customs.
  2. mickey_bee
    So they got lucky and found some drugs in the post, and now they're claiming they're one step ahead of Silk Road? Huh?

    Customs always say this when they make a seizure. 'Look! It shows that people who import drugs will be caught! Because we caught these guys!' When in actual fact what they should be saying is, 'Look how much drugs there are in our country, and so far this year we've barely seized a hundredth of that, which means 99% of everything imported into this country gets through!'.

    You can spin any story....
  3. Docta

    For the sake of a more clear understanding of what the AFP are saying in this story it must be understood that Australia has the highest quarantine standards of any country.

    Australia Post works hand in glove with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service .

    100 per cent of incoming international mail is inspected, every letter, every peace of international airmail cargo. State-of-the-art mail screening technology is operational at all international mail facilities, Screening for any type of organic material or concealment.

    Saying that sending drugs through the post is "almost always safe" is just not true, what maybe in one part of the world is not in another.
    I'm not saying that small concealment's don't get past the border protection service's in Australia, I'm saying that posting drugs to a country that leads the world in postal detection is far from safe and certainly not advisable.
  4. Ellisdeee

    No. The mail is not just a field day to transport illegal things in, even within your own country. I am not sure why this is all of a sudden new to people. There have been illegal uses of mail service way before the internet even existed that had repercussions, like breaking any law. Sending drugs in the mail is illegal and not safe. You are always taking that gamble. It's about as smart to send drugs in the mail as it is to send explosives. Yeah people get away with it, people also get away with buying drugs in public view areas. I am just astonished at the ignorance that people really think it's just "lol illegal drugs in the mail, no problem will happen, just don't cross the border." I haven't posted a lot lately but this is just absurd to read. Maybe more-so that somebody gave a green star to an admittance on this site that you are remotely 'safe' transporting illegal drugs in the mail. Ridiculous. To lay out such a bad idea and have it given support. Silk Road is a stupid fucking idea. I can't be more blunt.

    ps. It's illegal internet transactions. Even by this 'logic' of only ordering within the country, for all you know you can give your shipping address to someone out of border who claims to be in the USA maybe to seem legit to those customers. All he has to do is charge his drugs right and make the shipping cost seem like he's in the USA. And there you have it, you might be receiving over the boarder because someone else is trying to add an extra mask to themselves. Idea reiterated.
  5. Cash.Nexus
    Think you missing the point of my post. The OP story features the Aus. police announcing they have interdicted contraband and arrested someone (note arrest, not conviction.) The implication is that Silk Road is unsafe: "The AFP have warned Aussies that if they use it, they'll be caught." C&BP: "...you're not as invisible as you think while using Silk Road."

    That's a promise? No, it's a scare story, as psychedelia says.

    The rep star indicates concurrence with my point that actually the bust was nothing to do with Silk Road per se but rather reflects Australia's stringent mail screening policies (confirmed by Docta.)

    Unlikely a vendor would lie about origin. If the order doesn't arrive the vendor won't get paid (escrow) and they would get very neg rep from customer, if it arrives or not. If that customer has been careful (and admits no guilt) there will be no evidence trail and no proof of intent.

    If you don't want to use it, fine. Potential customers have to assess the risks considering their national mail/courier and Customs systems. If you don't want to take risks, just say no. But check anecdotal evidence on the (clear) net: lots of cynics and critics but plenty satisfied customers.
  6. Docta
    [imgr=white]http://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=27597&stc=1&d=1344734231[/imgr]POLICE and customs officials are turning their attention to the online marketplace of illegal drugs, Silk Road, which is achieving an estimated $22 million a year in sales.

    Silk Road - started by ''Dread Pirate Roberts'' in February last year - functions like a black market version of eBay, complete with vendor feedback, dispute resolution and sales promotions. Cocaine and ecstasy sell for a quarter of street prices in Australia while drugs such as cannabis and prescription medication are shipped worldwide.

    The Australian Federal Police recently arrested a Melbourne man for allegedly importing drugs into Australia via Silk Road, which operates in the so-called ''dark net'' or ''hidden web''. He was charged with 10 offences relating to the importation, trafficking and possession of narcotics and prohibited weapons, and is due to appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court on October 24.

    In May, the federal police and Customs seized 120 kilograms of illicit substances imported via the postal system. They arrested 37 people.

    The federal police are so concerned about the number of Australians using the site that they and Customs recently warned Silk Road users ''their identity will not always remain anonymous and when caught, they will be prosecuted''.

    But Nigel Phair, a former policeman turned computer security consultant who has just secured funding from the National Drug Law Enforcement Research Fund to look into the online drugs trade, says police need to make huge changes if they are to make a dent in the problem.
    The Carnegie Mellon University's computer security professor, Nicolas Christin, spent more than six months on daily analysis of Silk Road for a research paper. He found use of the site had been growing and total revenue for its more than 500 sellers was about $US1.9 million ($1.8 million) a month - and $US143,000 a month went to the site's operators as commission.

    Christin estimates Silk Road has up to 150,000 customers who bought 24,422 items from February 3 and July 24 this year. Cannabis is the most popular item.
    Despite the anonymity of the service and the lack of legal recourse if you get ripped off, Christin found that for 96.5 per cent of items buyers gave a 5 out of 5 feedback rating.
    The site seems to be increasingly popular with Australians, according to Monica Barratt, a research fellow at the National Drug Research Institute, who says it highlights the futility of law enforcement.
    ''Drug use and the demand for drug use isn't changing, so if for some reason Silk Road is suppressed or removed, there will just be another supply channel pop up,'' she says.
    Users can access the service only using TOR software, which purports masks the user's location and details. Payment is made using the encrypted but volatile digital currency Bitcoin.
    Phair says: ''There is a perception among many law enforcement and regulatory agencies that it is all too hard to conduct investigations involving TOR, so never start. There needs to be much more training of general investigators in conducting technical lines of inquiry, including the purchase of forensic discovery equipment if we are going to make a dent in this problem.''

    But because drugs are delivered by post, anyone who uses Silk Road runs the risk of their parcel being intercepted.
    It is not clear how many of the billions of parcels Australia Post handles are scanned and Christin found most sellers used techniques to make package inspection unlikely, such as vacuum sealing or ''professional looking'' envelopes with typed addresses.
    It is not an offence to access the Silk Road but the federal police say anyone who imports border-controlled drugs faces a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and/or a $825,000 fine.

    The acting manager in the customs cargo and maritime targeting branch, Alana Sullivan, says Customs monitors illicit e-commerce platforms including Silk Road and is aware that Australian sellers and buyers use it.
    It is understood authorities have difficulty identifying the websites linked to seizures because intercepted parcels often do not have identifying features. Police rely on finding documentary or forensic evidence to link a seizure to a site, or an admission by the offender. The federal police do not have jurisdiction to investigate websites based overseas. They can refer matters to overseas counterparts but cannot compel them to act.


  7. Cash.Nexus
    Meet the convicted Australian Silk Road vendor who now faces up to 25 years in jail

    [IMGL=white]http://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=31276&stc=1&d=1359840618[/IMGL]After being arrested in July 2012, Australian Silk Road customer Paul Leslie Howard has pleaded guilty to two charges of “importing a marketable quantity of a border-controlled drug – which carries a maximum of 25 years jail – and to trafficking controlled drugs. Howard, who also pleaded guilty to a charge of possessing 32 controlled weapons, was remanded in custody for sentencing next week,” reports The Age.

    The defendant said he was turned on to the site by an article written by journalist @EileenOrmsby, who regularly covers the Road on her blog as well as in Australian newspapers and journals. Her October 2012 article Silk Road: The eBay of Illegal Drugs was cited during the trial.

    Howard’s time on Silk Road began on April 19, 2012 when he registered as Shadh1. He immediately set up a vendor’s account and made a forum post advertising his services:

    Hey guys , I’m just starting out here. I’m Aus based and only shipping to Aus so as not to roach on anyone’s turf :). I’ll be basically doing dutch speed and peruvian charlie to start and branch into more as I get coin back in my pocket. I source from both sr and non sr vendors but I prefer the sr system as far as selling securely is concerned ! So yeh that’s me story and I’m keen for any tips or just some chat from you guys as I’m still learning !

    Silk Road users quickly noted that his prices (for example, $500 for a gram of cocaine) were extremely high but he responded that Australia always has higher prices for these products. Soon, user Om enthusiastically reviewed his DMT:

    Well I had shadh1′s DMT on saturday, me and a mate divided it in two and put it in a electronic vaporiser, quite smooth, not harsh or like burning plastic, but also really not a great taste… after the first breath nothing happened, then after the second… WOW.

    No break-through the to machine elves land or anything but it was AMAZING. Everything was colour-cycling and pulsing in a way unlike any acid, or even acid+NOS combo, and it was just so euphoric… and yet so short-lived!

    You able to get any more shadh1?

    Mixed but generally positive reviews of Howard’s product began to pile up. Several users were vocally uncomfortable around Howard, with user itsmagic going so far as to say he was weary because “I have a feeling you don’t know 100% of what goes on around here, and that makes me feel uneasy. For a seller, I would assume they’d be very confident in knowing this whole system very well, and I just don’t feel like you know that. You don’t seem to have that personality of a seller either.”

    Despite some general uneasiness about Howard, more and more positive reviews began to accumulate including a novel-length trip report from user cosmic jim. We can spare ourselves the majority of the report but here’s the meat of what Howard’s DMT was capable of according to Jim:

    Visions of the horrible, teeth shattering, mind numbing scale of gods infinite fractal nature. I was scared. The primal urge of wanting my mother. A cat in the room was sitting closeby and I prayed for it to look after me until the experience was over. It answered my prayer. As I was laying another cat walked up behind my back purring with warmth. I understood that these experiences are likely induced by other local organized demi-god intelligences possibly for the acceleration of the raising of human consciousness. Surely nothing seems unreasonable at this scale. The horrible scale. After the hourish was up, the dmt body feeling was gone and I felt much better. I went to see my friends again. For the rest of the night I was a beacon of pure joy and compassion.

    The following day, Jim woke up, took another pill and proceeded to gain “Christ consciousness” as everyone he spoke to fell in love with him. This was the most outstandingly positive (and just plain outstanding) review Howard would receive on Silk Road. “I was just jesus for a while, ok?”

    Howard sold a diverse mixture of drugs from then on and garnered more positive reviews, building a respectable customer base. The last post in Howard’s dedicated thread was a happy review of his heroin. The satisfied customer promised that he’d buy again.

    By mid-July, Howard’s home had been raided and Australian police released a triumphant note about the arrest.

    “Criminals are attempting to exploit the international mail system through online networks, but the recent arrest demonstrates that we are one step ahead of them,” said Australian Federal Police Manager Crime Operations Peter Sykora.

    “Prosecutor Morgan Brown said Australian Customs and Border Protection Service officers in Melbourne and Sydney examined mail articles addressed to Howard at his Brunswick West home”, reported The Age.

    Mailing to island nations is a particularly difficult endeavor as their borders are guarded relatively effectively. In fact, an intercepted package is far less daunting to Silk Road than the prospect of governments succesfully monitoring Tor or Bitcoin’s anonymizing services. The general consensus among the Tor community is that the Australian police are not “one step ahead” of Tor or Silk Road. The specifics of exactly how Howard was caught remain unknown.

    In the wake of the case, Silk Road’s twitter is now warning customers against following its own account or that of journalist @EileenOrmsby while using real names.

    Whether this is just a general cautionary measure or a reaction to a specific threat remains to be seen.

  8. kumar420
    Oh fuck, shadh1 was big last time i browsed the road. Pretty sure he did dutch speed, ice, sometimes coca and rarely some afghan brown, as well as mdma pills. A warning for other vendors out there, just because btc are untraceable after going through the tumbler doesn't mean they cant get you for other shit. He's not the first aussie vendor to be nabbed either.
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