Following the (DNM) bible? A crime script analysis of darknet drug vending

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Abstract

Darknet drug vending appears to be a multifaceted crime. Vendors use encrypted technologies to anonymously access cryptomarkets, engage buyers with effective advertising techniques, and employ stealth methods to send packages to buyers. What remains unclear is how these different methods come together in a single criminal process. This research addresses this gap by conducting a crime script analysis using 25 darknet drug vending ‘how-to’ guides. The developed crime script is then applied to 50 vendor arrest cases to test its application in practise. The results show that darknet drug vendors display a high degree effort in the completion of their crimes, and may be conceptualised, in partial contrast to traditional market drug dealers, as predominantly rational actors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-439
Number of pages21
JournalCrime, Law and Social Change
Volume80
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023

Keywords

  • Crime script analysis
  • Cryptomarket
  • Darknet
  • Drugs
  • Rational choice theory
  • Vendors

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