Man Accused of Using Students, Dark Web, Bitcoin to Sell Drugs

Anthony Scott Boeckholt has been arrested for allegedly trafficking drugs via two college students and conducting deals on the dark web with Bitcoin.

Anthony Scott Boeckholt, 42, of Forest City, Iowa is charged with felony engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. His alleged offenses involving drugs, the dark web, and Bitcoin occurred from January 1, 2016 to January 23, 2018.

Boeckholt was arrested on January 29 at his residence. He is being held in Winnebago County Jail, awaiting extradition to Athens County, Ohio.

It is alleged that Boeckholt sent large shipments of narcotics and other drugs to two college students in Athens. It’s believed they then sold the drugs to buyers in Athens County.

According to Athens County prosecutor Keller Blackburn, “Ohio is in the middle of an opiate crisis, and this suspect in Iowa was using college kids to traffic thousands of dollars in narcotics.”

Questioning Leads to Clues Regarding Bitcoin Drug Deals on Dark Web

Boeckholt’s name came to investigators’ attention after the two college students were arrested for drug trafficking. During questioning, investigators learned that the students allegedly used the dark web to conduct transactions with Bitcoin.

The dark web is a part of the Internet that is not indexed by search engines and is accessible only with specific software. It is used mainly to conduct illegal activity. Bitcoin is a popular decentralized currency because it is sent anonymously.

Discussions with the college students led to evidence for search warrants and Boeckholt’s arrest.

“The secretive nature of the dark web and cryptocurrency allows huge drug deals to be made without a trace,” Blackburn said. “This means that anything purchased on the dark web may not be what it appears, leading to fentanyl-laced narcotics and other more severe substances.”

According to Blackburn, drugs purchased on the dark web and linked to this investigation led to at least two overdoses in 2017.

The case remains under investigation and it is believed that additional charges will be laid in Iowa and Ohio.