Darknet Drug Sales and Addiction Treatment in California

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the delivery of and access to healthcare across the U.S. Though online pharmacies and telemedicine were popular before the pandemic, they became more widespread when everyone was on lockdown. Unfortunately, another trend rose due to these circumstances. Instead of searching the Internet for “drug rehabs in California”, many people with problematic substance use turned to the dark web to buy drugs. 

An insight into the dark web drug trade

Known as the darknet or dark web, this refers to a subsection of the Internet that is not indexed by search engines and is only accessible via special browsers and software that hide IP addresses and complicate tracing users. 

Since it’s more difficult to access and is considered anonymous, the dark web is often used for black market sales, including illegal drugs. The payment is made in cryptocurrencies which are also used for legal transactions on the open web.

Darknet drug markets emerged about a decade ago. Since then, these illicit sales have developed into a multi-million-dollar industry. According to The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), there was a 300% increase in the size of the market between 2017 and 2020.

Buying drugs on the darknet can be as dangerous as doing it in a back alley. Drugs can be laced with fentanyl and prescription pills can be fake.

And though users believe the dark web gives a possibility to engage in criminal activity anonymously, that’s not true. Law enforcement agencies know what is going on.

According to the World Drug Report, the sales of drugs over the dark web are likely to continue. Media attention that darknet busts attract tends to stir up public interest and generate traffic to illegal marketplaces. While the coverage of drug busts is necessary, addiction treatment experts emphasize the importance of providing more information about the best rehab facilities in California.

Identifying dealers on the darknet

California man and his alleged accomplice from Texas are charged in selling drugs “through dark net and encrypted messaging applications”, the US Department of Justice reported in their Friday news release (December 16, 2022). 

They are facing life sentences for selling over 120,000 fentanyl-laced fake oxycodone pills, and more than 140 kilograms of methamphetamine, black tar heroin, and cocaine.

There are many others like these two men. Last month, Cerritos man was charged with running a large-scale operation that sold $2 Million worth of fentanyl on the dark net. Agents found 20K fake oxycodone pills containing fentanyl and 6 tablet press machines.  

Another man, a tattoo shop owner, was sentenced to 7 years and 3 months for selling heroin and meth on the dark web. According to federal prosecutors in California, he shipped it in bags of candy.

Nicolas Christin, a Carnegie Mellon University computer science professor and long-time Dark Web-watcher, explains a shift in police tactics. Instead of taking down the markets, the police now focus on collecting data from seized marketplaces to trace large vendors who “ship physical products and need to have access to supply upstream.” One can quickly move to another market, but cannot start selling lots of pills overnight.  

The FBI-led Joint Criminal Opioid Darknet Enforcement Team (J-CODE) is committed to identifying vendors by employing sophisticated, high-tech strategies. Donald Alway, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s LA Field Office, says that since its inception, J-CODE has arrested over 300 dark web traffickers and seized $42 million, 800 kilograms of narcotics, and 145 guns.

If you’ve ever thought about purchasing drugs on the dark web, be aware of the risks. Many buyers were surprised by DEA agents before their door instead of the parcel of ordered drugs they expected for. Buying prescription or illegal drugs off the Internet is a crime that can result in a criminal charge and conviction.

Getting Drug Addiction Treatment in California

If you live in the Golden State and you find yourself addicted to prescription medicine or an illegal drug, you can start your road to recovery in one of the best rehab centers in California. Qualified personnel helps people with all types of addiction work through their substance abuse. 

In fact, there are more than 1400 drug and alcohol treatment centers in the state. So, you can find the one that meets your requirement, including location, price, set of services, program duration, and even specific needs (age- or gender-specific center). 

So, what can you expect when you come to the best drug rehabs in California? 

  • Detox

Its goal is to clean the body from the leftover toxins of drugs or alcohol and safely manage acute withdrawal symptoms.

  • Behavioral counseling 

Therapy tackles underlying causes of substance abuse and teaches different tips to maintain sobriety.

  • Medication-assisted treatment (if necessary)

Medications like Methadone, Suboxone, Sublocade, Subutex, and others are used to ease drug cravings, treat any post-acute withdrawal symptoms, and reduce the risk of relapse. 

  • Addressing co-occurring disorders  

Clients undergo evaluation for co-occurring mental health issues such as depression and anxiety and get the necessary care and treatment. 

  • Individual approach

Addiction treatment experts recognize that substance use disorders impact each person differently. At the best drug rehab centers in California, multidisciplinary teams of licensed professionals see every client as an individual with unique challenges and potential. They believe that substance abuse treatment should be personalized. 

  • Long-term follow-up

After-care services help to avoid falling back into the claws of addiction.

So, if you’re suffering from a drug and alcohol abuse, you can benefit from a rehabilitation program that treats “a whole person” and strengthens the mind, body, and spirit. 

Avoiding or postponing treatment comes with a lot of potential negative consequences: health issues (both physical and mental), financial problems, job loss, broken relationships, overdose, and death. Also, buying substances online exposes you to all kinds of danger, from getting scammed and receiving Fentanyl-laced drugs to facing a felony charge. We encourage you to make small research on rehabs and contact one or two to learn more about their treatment programs.

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