Pennsylvania Family Sold Counterfeit Pills on the Dark Web

~2 min read | Published on 2024-03-06, tagged Darkweb-VendorPleaded-Guilty using 399 words.

A family of three pleaded guilty to manufacturing and distributing fentanyl-laced pills through the dark web.

One of MonPham's listings

Hadja Franklin, 55, Tanziludin Bangurah, 52, and their child, Nabyunissa Bangoura, 34, manufactured counterfeit oxycodone and Xanax in a laboratory in their residence in Pennsylvania before distributing them through the dark web under the vendor name "MonPham."
The FBI, USPIS, and FDA-OCI launched investigations into MonPham in fall 2021. A review of the vendor's accounts on several markets, including ToRReZ, ASAP, Vice City, Bohemia, and Tor2Door, revealed that all the accounts had the same PGP key. The vendor also made direct deals via Wickr under the username "DrZhivagoEM."
During the investigations, the investigating agents made multiple undercover purchases of oxycodone and Xanax from MonPham via dark web marketplaces and Wickr.

The undercover purchases

Blockchain analysis revealed that bitcoin sent to the vendor during the undercover purchases ended up in an account at an undisclosed exchange. Information acquired from the exchange revealed that the account was being accessed from an IP address associated with PenTeleData. Information from PenTeleData revealed that the IP address had been assigned to Bangurah.
The investigators set up surveillance at Bangurah's residence in August 2022. On August 24, Bangurah exited the residence carrying a backpack and the investigators followed him to a USPS collection box where he dropped off a package. The investigators retrieved the package, acquired a search warrant, and found that it carried 27 counterfeit oxycodone pills. The investigators contacted the package's intended recipient. The recipient revealed they had purchased Oxy from MonPham. The recipient also gave the investigators access to his account and they confirmed he had an order with MonPham that was awaiting delivery.
The investigators executed a search warrant at Bangurah's residence on August 31. The search resulted in the discovery of a fully equipped pill production laboratory in the laundry room. The investigators seized a commercial-grade pill press, a vacuum sealer, a commercial-grade
powder blender, and personal protective equipment. They also seized an undisclosed number of pills, electronic devices, and ledgers.

The lab

Conversations recovered from the electronic devices revealed that the family had been using fentanyl and other ingredients to manufacture the counterfeit pills.

One of the conversations

Sales records recovered from the seized ledgers revealed that the trio had sold approximately 3,057 counterfeit oxycodone pills and 57,000 counterfeit Xanax pills.
On March 5, 2024, each of the defendants pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl.