The popular classifieds site Craigslist—used by thousands of New Yorkers to find jobs, apartments and dates—is also a flourishing pharmacy, said a New York narcotics prosecutor.
Prosecutor Bridget Brennan has asked for help from Craigslist to crack down on drugs being peddled on the site, the Daily News reported.
Using slang like "Tina Turner" (crystal meth), "ski" (cocaine), and the old standby "420" (marijuana), enterprising drug dealers have turned online to hawk their products, Brennan said.
"They'll offer ski tickets in July in New York, and Tina Turner tickets when she's not performing in town," Brennan told the Daily News. Finding drug dealers on the site is like “shooting fish in a barrel,” she said.
Brennan has written to Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster to request his help curbing the illicit drug trade online, the News said. Brennan hopes to model a crackdown on Craigslist’s recent efforts to limit prostitution on the site. "Erotic services" listers are now charged $10 per listing by credit card. Transaction details can later be subpoenaed by investigators.
Police have already used the site to snare a range of dealers, from hardened felons to white-collar drug dealers, the News reported. A Citigroup vice president, Mark Rayner, attracted police attention after posting an ad offering Ecstasy, ketamine, cocaine and crystal meth. An undercover cop arrested him after he tried to sell 50 Ecstasy pills and 7 grams of cocaine. A paroled robber, Albert Rivera, posted ads for drugs from his halfway house before being caught by police.
Without the interference of the authorities, online drug dealers have their work cut out for them. Ski season's impending start and a Tina Turner tour starting today have flooded the site with ads for, you know, actual ski equipment and concert tickets.