On March 16, a 26-year-old from Weissenhorn stood before a judge at the Supreme Court of Appeals on amphetamine distribution charges. The 26-year-old ordered the drug once – in 2014. And the order involved no intended distribution. He simply wanted amphetamine; he used it as early as age twelve—thanks, in part, to his mother—an amphetamine user as well. As a result, he left the courtroom free of amphetamine distribution charges.
“It was an exceptional case in several respects,” one news outlet wrote. Government officials considered the case unique as well. Perhaps the most noteworthy piece of evidence involved the date he ordered amphetamine. Early 2014. But the investigation indirectly started in 2015. The defendant’s life changed dramatically between the darknet marketplace order and 2017—an element that impressed the judge and improved the chances of a light sentence.
In early 2015, police investigated a darknet vendor who operated from Leipzig. Although he used a pseudonym and cloaked his identity well, District Court Director Thomas Mayer explained, police identified him. “Police investigate the darknet and their methods and tactics are very good,” the Court Director said. After police identified and raided the Leipzig vendor, they discovered “meticulous” records. The vendor recorded every transaction and left customer detail in the records. Police needed little assistance in understanding the records.
Court documents revealed nothing of the records themselves other than the size of the former vendor’s customer-base. Investigators gathered the information of “13,000 customers worldwide,” the courtroom heard. Alongside the extensive collection of customer details, police found 350 kilograms of narcotics and “an address card, address, and delivery details of the current defendant.”
Law enforcement gathered evidence and filed an indictment. They charged the 26-year-old with intent to distribute charges based on the amphetamine order quantity—100 grams. Once he heard of the indictment, he immediately admitted to the darknet order. He argued that he ordered solely for personal consumption. No plans to distribute. During the court case, he explained that part of the order belonged to his mother—he gave his mother amphetamine as she struggled in her personal life, at the time.
Both the defendant and his mother used drugs in the past, he explained. And at the time of the 2014 order, he saw darknet drug distribution explained on the TV. His mother, he continued to explain to the court, used drugs and found herself in the fallout of a painful divorce. He lived with his mother at the time, but the rest of his family moved in with his father. He found it easy to use amphetamine and provide his mother with some. He said that he used drugs both long before and after the darknet order; he simply avoided detection.
Since then, though, he explained in his own defense, life moved on. And it moved him literally and metaphorically, according to his statements. He moved out from the home that his mother lived in and into one with a friend. He worked hard and completed an apprenticeship. He developed an intimate relationship and wanted a family with the significant other. His girlfriend reflected said feelings and pursued a “regulated” career. The Court viewed this as proof of a changed man that lived a changed life—in contrast to his statements about his life during 2014.
District Court Director Thomas Mayer said that this case was “less severe” than most drug cases, despite involving a large quantity of a “hard drugs.” His statement mirrored the case’s outcome. The prosecution pushed for one and a half years imprisonment. The defense argued for anything where the defendant remained a free man.
Director Mayer considered the case “minor.” He explained this as he dropped the drug trafficking charges. Instead of imprisonment, he sentenced the 26-year-old to three years of probation and a small fee.