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Published on May 16, 2024
Alleged Dark Web Drug Ring Busted, Suspects in Los Angeles and Las Vegas Charged With Fentanyl, Cocaine TraffickingSource: U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration

In a major crackdown on drug trafficking, four individuals were nabbed for allegedly shipping fentanyl-laden pills and cocaine purchased on the dark web across the nation, as per the U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of California.

The collared suspects include Craig Rushton and Christian McKibben of Las Vegas, nabbed today, and Alejandro Soto along with Austin Blacano of Burbank, who were put in cuffs Wednesday; they all face charges of conspiracy, and distribution of both fentanyl and cocaine, with the Burbank duo set to appear today before a Los Angeles judge Rushton and McKibben's court date is on the calendar for tomorrow in Las Vegas.

According to the indictment, since at least April of last year, this group was in cahoots with Brian McDonald from Van Nuys and Ciara Clutario of Burbank, who were charged previously with the same drug trafficking conspiracy—an operation where the two allegedly maintained a darknet profile to peddle their illegal wares, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of California.

Further accusations state that the quartet of defendants took orders under the direction of McDonald and cohorts to package and dispatch the drugs sold on dark web markets, the indictment alleges that they operated out of McKibben and Rushton's Burbank residence packaging substances turned into hundreds of thousands of dollars' worth of illicit narcotics sent far and wide across the US.