Feds: Atlanta group uses dark web to export guns around the worl - CBS46 News

Feds: Atlanta group uses dark web to export guns around the world

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ATLANTA (CBS46) -

Four people from metro Atlanta known to federal authorities as the “CherryFlavor group” now face federal charges for buying guns legally in Georgia and illegally reselling them to buyers around the world.

The group posted the weapons for sale online in an area of the internet many people know little about: the dark web.

Wednesday, the US Attorney's Office revealed the details of the smuggling scheme that took place in secret spaces online, sending guns to countries with much stricter gun laws.

As law enforcement cracks down on websites like Craigslist.com or Backpage.com trolling for illegal activity, like cockroaches in the light, criminals scurry for somewhere darker. 

“These sites are harder to track They use proxies to hide their true location. They are switching their IP address… The site may be up today gone tomorrow,” revealed CBS46 Law Enforcement Analyst Vincent Hill.

 The dark web is small part of the deep web only accessible through special downloadable, software allowing users and website operators to remain seemingly untraceable. Vincent Hill says all kinds of crimes take place in this virtual black market.

“You can buy anything in the dark web from people's identities stolen credit cards… I've heard of people buying crack cocaine, marijuana, heroin,” Hill explained.

Federal authorities just announced the arrests a group of gun traffickers based in Atlanta using the dark web and darknet sites like “Black Market Reloaded” to export guns to more than a dozen countries across the globe.  

Guns were legally purchased in Georgia by three men and one woman known on the dark web as the CherryFlavor group. Federal authorities say they shipped guns 50 times from US Post Office locations in and around Atlanta.

The guns were hidden inside large electronics.  A gun was recovered in a karaoke machine in Australia and another inside a stereo headed to France.

A massive audit of internationally-shipped packages from several local post offices resulted in the identification of the individuals known as the CherryFlavor group.

Three defendants, Sherman Jackson, Brendan Person, and Gerren Johnson, were located in Atlanta. A fourth defendant, William Jackson, lives in East Point.

The next hearing in this case is in two weeks on June 14.

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