Despite recent claims that bitcoin is becoming less popular for illicit dealings on the dark web, investigations show that it is still the payment method of choice for many. The most recent example comes from the US Navy, where a few entrepreneurial cadets reportedly used bitcoin to buy drugs which they distributed to their classmates for profit.
Sailing the High Seas
US Navy investigators have uncovered an alleged drug ring at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, involving between ten to two-dozen suspects. Three cadets are accused of buying cocaine, ketamine and LSD on the dark web using bitcoin and selling the drugs to their classmates. The investigation reportedly began nearly three months ago after one midshipman informed the authorities about the drug trade on the base.
The top brass ordered a surprise drug test for all 4,500 cadets before dawn on Wednesday morning and DEA drug-sniffing dogs discovered cocaine in the room of one of the suspected users. The cadet suspected of owning the cocaine was at athletic practice at the time and she reportedly made a run for it but was caught and taken in for questioning.
“The Naval Academy and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service recently initiated a command-assisted investigation in Annapolis after receiving a midshipman report of alleged recreational drug use within the Brigade,” said Cmdr. David Mckinney, a Naval Academy spokesman, in a statement to Fox News. “[T]he results of the investigation are still pending. We are continuing to work with NCIS on these reported allegations. The Navy has a zero tolerance for drug abuse and takes all allegations of misconduct very seriously.”
Dive Into the Deep Web
While they are usually linked in the media, the markets of the dark web (aka dark net) offer a variety of different kind of wares other than drugs. Our recent review listed among these pirated software, unreleased movies, stolen accounts to Netflix and iTunes, stolen gift cards, credit card credentials, passports, and social security numbers of the deceased. And if you want to learn how bitcoin fits into this, you can watch the Silk Road and follow the US vs. Ross Ulbricht saga.
It is also important to remember that, while they are illegal in most countries, psychedelic drugs can have incredible therapeutic potential – especially for soldiers and veterans. For example, the $86 million bitcoin charity Pineapple Fund will donate up to $5 million to help fund Phase 3 clinical trials of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in patients with severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Do you think these Naval Academy cadets should be expelled if found guilty, or should they be given a second chance? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.
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Author: Avi Mizrahi