Nantes Police Arrest Woman Picking Darknet Parcel for Roommate
A woman in Nantes, France, was arrested for possession of a packagereceived at a post office on behalf of her roommate. She had made a quick dash to the local post office by request of her friend, but her arrest took longer than anyone expected. The 26-year-old was confronted for the package containing 220 MDMA tablets. The package had been ordered from the darknet and had been sent from the Netherlands. The lady however, was not aware of the contents of the package she held in her hands.
Shocked, she was held in police custody for several hours as she could not explain the circumstances that led to her arrest. Police couldn’t understand why she opted to pick up the package at a traffic corner when it could have been delivered to the house. These suspicions pointed at her guilt. Understandably, she couldn’t explain much as only the person who owned the package could explain better, and this was not her.
The 31-year-old male roommate would later present himself to the police station claiming the package. He admitted to having ordered the synthetic drugs from the dark web, consequently absolving the detained woman of any wrongdoing. Immediately, he was arrested and the woman freed without any penalties.
The arrest of the woman came quickly after customs agents at Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris scanned the suspicious package. Add to this that the package arrived from the Netherlands, a hub of dark web drug traffic, and all flags were raised. The Netherlands is also the main source of synthetic stimulants exported to France. Although they trade MDMA in smaller amounts, France acts as a transit for dealers targeting the UK and Spain, according to the France country drug report of 2017. There has been growth in the MDMA drug market over the last couple years with notable diversification of marketed products.
Netherlands remains the region’s center for production and drug supplies. Although it moves small amounts of drugs, the darknet is a favorite for those looking for deep cover and anonymity.
The huge consumption of drugs in the country has been a major concern. Earlier in 2013, Eurostat had called on EU countries to factor in drug trafficking and prostitution to harmonize their GDPs. Some countries including Netherlands and Spain complied. But it wasn’t until this year in January, that France’s national Statistics Office (INSEE) announced that it would start including money spent on drugs in calculating GDP.
According to research, France spends an estimated 2.7 billion Euros in illegal drugs yearly. The research however, notes and stresses that this could be a gross underestimation as the voluntary data collection may not be totally correct. This is because some people may have withheld information on their drug consumption levels for several reasons. Some do not fully trust the government and would not give out information on their drug use fearing the risk of prison time. The estimated amounts account for 0.1% of France’s GDP generated through drug trafficking.
The story above is simply unusual because the man offered himself up to free his roommate. This isn’t always the case. Often times, drug dealers let those caught in the mess pay the price. He will be tried for drug trafficking as well as pay several thousands of Euros in fines to the customs office.
The incident in Nantes is not an isolated one. In the previous week, there had been reports very similar. Most of these wrong arrests have not always had the same particular ending. Quite often, darknet drug traffickers send packages to addresses owned by different people. They mostly are people closely related to them such as family or friends. This has led to several arrests of unsuspecting relatives when staged deliveries are made after investigations by customs. Another peculiar arrest from the darknet happened to a Vienna woman when a parcel was delivered to a post box outside her house.