Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Today In Hipster News: "Cops cuff 'dark web drug baron' – after he flew to US for World Beard Championships"

From The Register:

Hirsute French hipster 'found with $500,000 in BTC'
A French national and suspected online drug dealer has been collared by US government agents – after he flew to America for the World Beard and Mustache Championships.

Gal Vallerius, 38, was arrested on August 31 after he landed to attend the contest. US Drug Enforcement Administration officials searched his laptop and, it is claimed, uncovered some interesting evidence. The agent alleged they discovered around $500,000 – split 50/50 in Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash – on the computer plus Tor installed, and PGP crypto-keys for someone calling themselves OxyMonster.

OxyMonster is a term of interest for Uncle Sam's drug squad: the moniker is used by a major player in the Dream Market narcotics souk found on the dark web. The DEA has been investigating the bazaar, hidden within the anonymizing Tor network, for over a year and had identified OxyMonster as both an administrator and senior moderator on the site – and also a major seller of OxyContin and Ritalin.

According to court documents [PDF] filed in Florida earlier this month, for the past year and a half, agents in the Sunshine State have been buying small quantities of drugs from the Dream Market, including 100 tabs of LSD, 11 tablets of hydrocodone and 28 grams of crystal meth....MORE
Ha! Amateurs.
Compare/contrast the above with a traveling man and his attorney on their way to the National District Attorneys Association's Conference on Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, April 25-29, 1971:
  • We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold. I remember saying something like "I feel a bit lightheaded; maybe you should drive..." And suddenly there was a terrible roar all around us and the sky was full of what looked like huge bats, all swooping and screeching and diving around the car, which was going about a hundred miles an hour with the top down to Las Vegas. And a voice was screaming: "Holy Jesus! What are these goddamn animals?"
  • The sporting editors had also given me $300 in cash, most of which was already spent on extremely dangerous drugs. The trunk of the car looked like a mobile police narcotics lab. We had two bags of grass, seventy-five pellets of mescaline, five sheets of high-powered blotter acid, a salt shaker half full of cocaine, and a whole galaxy of multi-colored uppers, downers, screamers, laughers and also a quart of tequila, a quart of rum, a case of Budweiser, a pint of raw ether and two dozen amyls. Not that we needed all that for the trip, but once you get locked into a serious drug-collection, the tendency is to push it as far as you can. 
  • The only thing that really worried me was the ether. There is nothing in the world more helpless and irresponsible and depraved than a man in the depths of an ether binge. And I knew we'd get into that rotten stuff pretty soon.
  • How long can we maintain? I wonder. How long before one of us starts raving and jabbering at this boy? What will he think then? This same lonely desert was the last known home of the Manson family. Will he make that grim connection...
  • No point mentioning those bats, I thought. The poor bastard will see them soon enough.
  • The car suddenly veered off the road and we came to a sliding halt in the gravel. I was hurled against the dashboard. My attorney was slumped over the wheel. “What’s wrong?” I yelled. “We can’t stop here. This is bat country!"
Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas