Man Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute Meth on the Darknet
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An Alexandria man pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine.
According to court documents, from about May 2019 through about Nov. 4, 2019, Dat Nguyen, 35, conspired to distribute peach tablets advertised as Adderall, but in fact containing methamphetamine, nationwide through the U.S. mail. Nguyen used the moniker “addy4cheap” on darknet markets, the Empire Market and Cryptonia. Between August 2019 and December 2019, law enforcement agents conducted 20 controlled purchases from “addy4cheap” on both markets for a total of 767 peach tablets received weighing approximately 268 grams total.
On Dec. 9, 2019, search warrants were executed at co-conspirators’ residences including the home of Lien Kim Thi Phan and Tyler Pham and the home of Hon Lam Luk. In the home of Phan and Pham, agents found 95 peach tablets, and in Luk’s residence, investigators found over 6,000 peach tablets weighing approximately 2.2 kilograms, all of which resembled those advertised on “addy4cheap” and those received by law enforcement through controlled purchases.
As of Dec. 10, 2019, “addy4cheap” had completed 3,665 sales on the Empire Market and received 2,568 reviews. Based on these reviews, “addy4cheap” had received approximately $482,572.10 in sales for an approximate 44,872 pills sold. As of Nov. 7, 2019, “addy4cheap” had fulfilled 140 transactions on Cryptonia.
Nguyen’s five co-conspirators all previously entered guilty pleas in connection with the conspiracy. One co-conspirator remains a fugitive.
Nguyen is scheduled to be sentenced on March 23, 2021. He faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; James A. Dawson, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office Criminal Division; Mark S. McCormack, Special Agent in Charge, FDA Office of Criminal Investigations, Metro Washington Field Office; Peter R. Rendina, Inspector in Charge of the Washington Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Colonel Edwin C. Roessler Jr., Fairfax County Chief of Police; and Jesse R. Fong, Special Agent in Charge for the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Washington Field Division, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema accepted the plea.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Bibeane Metsch and Jay V. Prabhu are prosecuting the case.
This investigation was conducted by the FBI Washington Field Office’s Hi-Tech Opioid Task Force, which is composed of FBI agents and task force partners, including special agents and officers of the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Criminal Investigations, DEA, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and detectives from local assisting police agencies. The task force is charged with identifying and investigating the most egregious Dark Web marketplaces, and the vendors operating on the marketplaces who are engaged in the illegal acquisition and distribution of controlled substances, to include fentanyl, methamphetamine, and other opioids.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:20-cr-265, and related cases 1:20-cr-24, 1:20-cr-29, 1:20-cr-32, 1:20-cr-155, 1:20-cr- 266and 1:19-mj-548.