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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 17, 2020

Darkweb Drug Trafficker Arrested in Operation DisrupTor Pleads Guilty

A darkweb cocaine and heroin trafficker has pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy, announced U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas.

Aaron Brewer - a 39-year-old charged under Operation DisrupTor, a coordinated international effort to disrupt opioid trafficking on the Darknet – pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

“Drug traffickers often believe the anonymity of the darknet will shield them from criminal prosecution. This prosecution proves that’s not the case,” said U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox. “The Northern District of Texas is committed to finding and stopping dealers wherever they are – whether that’s on the streets or in the dark crevasses of the internet.”

“Stopping the flow of drugs into our communities is of utmost importance, having seen the devastation they bring,” said Thomas Noyes, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service Fort Worth Division.  “While criminals exploit technology in an effort to stay hidden, Postal Inspectors will spare no effort in their mission to protect the U.S. Mail, the Postal Service and its customers.  We will continue to find, and bring to justice, individuals like this, and we thank the U.S. Attorney’s Office and F.B.I. for their significant work.”  

According to plea papers, Mr. Brewer admitted he created darkweb market vendor accounts in order to sell cocaine, heroin, and other controlled substances online.

Mr. Brewer’s customers paid him in cryptocurrency, typically bitcoin, and frequently used aliases for shipping. After receiving payment, Mr. Brewer used the U.S. Mail and other shipping services to transmit controlled substances to customers in North Texas and across the country.

In March 2020, law enforcement discovered a ledger linking controlled substances orders with tracking numbers inside his apartment.

Mr. Brewer later admitted that over an 11-monthe period, he dealt more than 4,000 grams of cocaine and more than 80 grams of black tar heroin, then used the more than $50,000 in proceeds of the illegal activity to pay his mortgage.

He now faces up to 20 years in federal prison. As part of his plea agreement, he agreed to forfeit a property in Plano, Texas to the government. 

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Dallas Field Office conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sid Mody is prosecuting the case.

Topic(s): 
Cyber Crime
Drug Trafficking
Contact: 
Erin Dooley Public Affairs 214-659-8707 erin.dooley@usdoj.gov
Updated December 17, 2020