Europol takes down Wall Street market: No, the other cesspool of dark international financial skullduggery

One of two dark net marketplaces taken down by coppers as they cuff 3 in Germany, 2 in LA

Three people have been arrested in Germany in connection with a dark net souk for drugs, dodgy documents and stolen data called the Wall Street Market.

Earlier this year Finnish customs and French police worked together to take down Silkkitie, also known as Valhalla Marketplace. Finnish customs seized a web server and sizeable quantities of Bitcoin. When the "same" traders from Silkkitie, which has been running since 2013, shifted their stalls to Wall Street, German plod were waiting, Europol noted.

Two people accused of selling narcotics via the Wall Street site have been arrested in Los Angeles.

German police said they'd seized over half a million euros in cash along with vehicles, six-digit amounts of Bitcoin and Monero cryptocurrencies as well as computers and storage gear.

Europol's executive director, Catherine De Bolle, said:

"These two investigations show the importance of law enforcement cooperation at an international level and demonstrate that illegal activity on the dark web is not as anonymous as criminals may think."

Europol claimed the Wall Street market had over 1 million users and 5,400 sellers. The site's administrators charged between 2 and 6 per cent commission on sales.

The operation involved cooperation between German Federal Criminal Police, the Dutch National Police, Europol, Eurojust and various US government agencies including the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service, Homeland Security Investigations, the US Postal Inspection Service, and the US Department of Justice.

Europol has a dedicated Dark Web Team to enable global co-operation in the ongoing whack-a-mole against dark net trading sites.

The full Europol statement is available here. ®

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