Police are changing the way they find drug dealers with a two-month operation targeting online drug supply in Sydney, leading to 21 people being charged with dealing.
Strike Force Oadby began in June, examining classified advertising websites, social media platforms and the ‘dark web’.
Over that time, police seized methylamphetamine (‘ice’), cannabis, LSD, cocaine, MDMA (ecstasy) and GHB with a street value of $32,000, as well as thousands of dollars in cash and stolen property.
Police arrested 21 people and charged them with a total of 45 drug-related offences.
They include a 23-year-old Macquarie Fields woman arrested near Central Railway Station over the alleged supply of cannabis; a 25-year-old Irish National detained in the CBD with suspected MDMA, and a 22-year-old Homebush man arrested in Haymarket, allegedly with ‘ice’ and cash in his car. A subsequent search of his home found more more ‘ice’ and cannabis.
He has been charged with two counts of supply, two counts of possession of a prohibited drug and dealing with proceeds of crime and was refused bail to appear in Central Local Court on August 25.
Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Bell said technology had changed how drugs are traded and policing had changed to combat an emerging trend.
“Technology has allowed drug suppliers to shift their focus out of public view and away from particular geographic areas; enabling them to engage with users in the online environment,” he said.
“We will continue to target the supply of illegal drugs using various methods, whether that is online or within the community.”
The police operation comes after Ross Ulbricht, 31, founder of the online drug bazaar Silk Road, was sentenced to life without parole in a US court earlier this year.
The site operated for nearly three years before it was shut down by the the FBI in 2013.
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