The police leave with both dealers, the hard drives, and Mortiz's laptop. They also confiscate 48,000 euros in cash and an unbelievable cache of 320 kilos of all sorts of drugs, sorted, and stored on the shelves in Moritz's childhood bedroom. Because Moritz—who thought he was invincible and who single-handedly built up and ran his drug empire, Shiny Flakes—still lives with his mom.
"He wanted to play God."
The package station network
The police publicized the success of their raid that afternoon, uploading on both Shiny Flakes' clearnet website and on his Onion domain, hosted on the darknet, an advertisement for careers in the Saxon police: "One job—1000 possibilities." For most visitors it just look a little bit more inviting than similar notes after police darknet operations that we have seen in the past.
"Dealers, run for your lives."
Professional Nerds won't be tried as Juveniles
The DIY drug boss' business had gotten out of hand, at least in recent months. According to the police investigation, on the one hand, he built up a highly professional drug business (he disguised the revenue as profit from a registered freelance web design business); nevertheless, his success and the pressure that came with it made him less careful. He started using the same package stations all the time to send out his goods. After the police became suspicious of a package with insufficient postage on it, all they had to do was keep an eye out for more packages of the same size with the various stamps and return addresses.
"The police can make hundreds of mistakes. But if I, the dealer, make a mistake, it's deadly."
The official staging in Saxony
In the presentation that follows, the police portray themselves like they're on an episode of Crimewatch. They boast of having captured data from the darknet and employing highly-specialized IT cracks during the investigation, leading to its success. The message: Nobody is out of reach of the law's eagle eyes, not the street dealer, not the darknet vendor and not even the customers.A large part of the investigation's success though was due to more classic police work, especially the use of surveillance. The pinpoint surveillance of Moritz's room, checking the incoming and outgoing mail at the nodal point of the DHL logistic center in Radeberg, right next to the Leipzig-Halle airport, and especially staking out certain package stations, that Mortitz allegedly continuously used, all heavily contributed to the success.
If you believe the local police, nobody is out of reach of the law's eagle eyes
"How am I supposed to picture this?" one reporter asks. "Did he hide these insane amounts under his bed or where do you put all this in a childhood bedroom?" "Since he was an orderly person, he stored it all on shelves," an officer answers. "It really wasn't a typical childhood bedroom, but who knows."And the authorities have another thrilling piece of information for those interested in bureaucracy in the audience: "He didn't keep accounting books." But he did have all the paraphernalia necessary for the portioning and packaging of drugs. Moritz, it's clear by now, tried as hard as he could to keep it a one man operation.
"It really wasn't a typical childhood bedroom, but who knows."
The Wandering Package
The Competition Causes Problems
*Names changed.Lead image: Just a small portion of the 320 kg of all sorts of drugs, that were seized during the raid. All images (when not stated otherwise) by Theresa Locker.This story has been translated from Motherboard Germany.