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Three College Students Busted for Drug Distribution

Illinois police arrested three Western Illinois University students for buying drugs on the darknet and reselling them to other students in and around McDonough county. The police called the drug operation a “Walmart of drugs.”

According to Macomb Investigations Lieutenant Lindsey May, a lengthy investigation conducted primarily by the United States Postal Inspection Service led to the arrest of the students. Lt. May announced that Zachary Dean Barnettgim, 18, William Carter Hironimus-Wendt, 19, and Jacob Cole Nelson, 22, were “significant targets” for local authorities. Local police have been working with postal inspectors in an ongoing effort to intercept packages before they arrive at the house of the intended recipient.

During the course of their investigation into darknet drug buyers in the area, local law enforcement learned of the three Western Illinois University students. They had been selling to students at the university and to other buyers in the area with no connection to the school. The dealers, according to Lt. May, played somewhat of a significant role in the local drug trade.

They ordered and redistributed psychedelic mushrooms, LSD, ecstasy, Xanax, MDMA, marijuana, THC infused candies, anabolic steroids, and Modafinil. Even if the trio had ordered drugs from the darknet infrequently, the wide array of drugs kept on hand would have required shipments from dozens of darknet vendors likely from a number of states spread across the country. And that is the best case scenario. A far worse scenario would have involved a high volume of international packages—a possible scenario, but the police never mentioned ICE, HSI, or CBP.

However, the postal service had known about the packages before they arrived at the apartment shared by Barnett and Nelson. Police raided Barnett while he was on school property. The police then raided Hironimus-Wendt and Nelson. The alleged dealers caught the following charges:

Barnett:

  • Contributing to the delinquency of a minor;
  • Seven counts of manufacturing or delivering a controlled substance;
  • And seven counts of possession of a controlled substance.

Hironimus-Wendt

  • Six counts of manufacturing or delivering a controlled substance;
  • Six counts of possession of a controlled substance;
  • And one count of manufacturing or delivering up to 500 grams of marijuana.

Nelson:

  • Two possession of a controlled substance charges.

They will appear in court later this month.

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