He is accused of having made millions of pounds on the illicit trade and got an eight-year sentence for it. Court will claim the proceeds and assets gained from this in a hearing scheduled for May.
Jukebox 7 Feb 2020 1
A very successful dark web drug dealer yesterday received an eight-year sentence for trading in heroin, ketamine, LSD, cannabis as well as other drugs via post through the United Kingdom.
The convicted, Paul Johnson (32), a resident of Market Harborough in Leicestershire is said to have made millions of pounds from the business enterprise using the dark web as a medium to make sales and order large shipments of product to sell from Spain, Canada and other countries.
Masking his activities by fronting as a tea trader with a business, he conducted business from his home, retailing drugs which he transported via mail to his customers within the UK and on the dark web.
Upon executing a search warrant at his resident in December of 2017, law enforcement found an assortment of drugs as well as packaging material branded for the fake company he fronted with, known as Labrador Tea Company.
Pictured here is Paul Johnson
Image Source: leicestermercury.co.uk
It is suspected that he began the illicit trade back in 2015 and has made millions of pounds in proceeds. Police estimate that he had made a whopping £1,868,946 in gross revenue since he began and seized large amounts of money he kept in a bank as well as some £314,358 in Bitcoin.
Prior to his arrest, law enforcement state that they intercepted several packages containing kilos of cannabis, ecstasy tablets and powder, as well as horse tranquiliser, and Ketamine on their way to several residences rented by Johnson between August of 2016 and November 2017
Upon his arrest, Johnson admitted to selling the drugs and acquiring criminal money from 2015 to 2017 and is said to have lived a rather modest life on the makings of his criminal enterprise in comparison to other dark web dealers.
In his defence, his lawyer – James Varley stated that Johnson worked alone and did not have any gang affiliations which made it less likely for him to go back to that life of crime. He added that Johnson was only looking for a way to provide comfortably for his family following his failure to secure a proper job after graduating with honours in business studies.
He [Johnson] was a working class boy from Yorkshire. He studied hard to obtain a first class Honours degree and walked out of university into a job at KFC – and didn’t know why he’d bothered obtaining the qualifications he did.
Johnson’s wife, Lia Johnson was also arraigned and confessed to acquiring criminal property which included their two cars and their house. She received a suspended sentence of 2 years.
James Varley added that the criminal exploits of his client were borne out of a desire to provide a comfortable life for his family; he was not a criminal.
The offending was done for money, money that he didn’t spend to any great extent. He was trying to reach a certain figure and then stop, one often hears that greed takes over. He wanted to provide for his wife and child and wasn’t making high on the hog.
He had fairly inexpensive cars and didn’t have expensive holidays; he was trying to generate income to live on and wasn’t flashing large sums of cash around or drawing attention to himself.
The sentence was handed down shortly after presiding JudgeNicholas Dean QC said,
This business was conducted in a rather unusual way in terms of the more frequent type of case we deal with in these courts…
It was persistent and sophisticated offending during a significant period, netting something in the order of two million pounds.