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Brazilian police have dismantled an upper-middle class gang accused of selling marijuana and ecstasy on the internet, officials say.
Police arrested 10 people on Wednesday and Thursday and were looking for four others in connection with the gang which sold drugs at clubs and parties, in addition to using Google's online networking community Orkut.
Named after Turkish software engineer Orkut Buyukkokten, Orkut is a by-invitation-only online community run by Google, where members can discuss a wide range of subjects including drugs.
The gang trafficked mostly in Ecstasy, a hallucinogenic drug favored by nightclub-goers, police said.
Most of the arrests were made in Niteroi, a city facing Rio de Janeiro across the Guanabara Bay. Other arrests were made in Buzios, a seaside resort 180km east of Rio de Janeiro.
Police said they seized some 3kg of marijuana and a firearm in the raids. The 10 arrested were charged with drug trafficking and criminal association. They face up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
Orkut has an international membership, but it is especially popular with Brazilians, who make up nearly half of its seven million members.
Police said they first discovered the drug ring through telephone wiretaps and continued to monitor its activities online.
I'm wondering how they "first discovered the drug ring through telephone wiretaps"...were they just scanning phones to see if anyone was selling drugs? I thought they needed a warrent for a wiretap. Maybe not with the Patriot Act?
-------------------- "life is like a drop of rain getting closer and closer to falling into a lake, and then when you hit the lake there is no more rain drop, only the lake."