Sports Doping Drug Ring Busted in Finland Linked to Valhalla Market

drug trafficking
Finnish Customs just exposed a major drug trafficking ring through the popular darknet market, Valhalla.

According to a press statement made by Finnish Customs this August, a large scale drug trafficking operation was discovered by the authorities.

The operation was ongoing for quite some time on the Valhalla Market, which is a known marketplace on the dark web.

The perpetrators operated within Finland and distributed drugs to buyers both within the country and internationally through the darknet market.

The entire operation was described as a gigantic drug trafficking ring by the authorities.

History of the Valhalla Market

The Valhalla Market had gone by a different brand name in its past. It was first known to the world as the Silkkitie, starting off as a purely local market available only to the Finish community.

The entire website was in Finnish, and so access to this market was restricted to locals of the country. Years later, the marketplace decided to go international and then rebranded to “Valhalla.”

According to the admin of the site, the market was first created so that the Finnish community could buy quality products (drugs) more easily.

In interviews with media sites, the admin argues that the street markets in Finland provide poor quality products and often times end up cheating the customer.

Moreover, since there is no physical confrontation online, users generally don’t have to be concerned about any potential violence.

The Valhalla darknet market only allows restricted access to users worldwide. You have to be sent an invitation to join the market’s base of users.

The admin of the site said that the most important reason for this restriction is to control the growth of the website.

As the site opened up to the international market, he wanted to make sure that there wouldn’t be any implosion occurring from a huge spike in growth.

The restricted access also allowed the admin to enforce a reward policy for the site’s users if they invite other buyers and vendors to join. This way, the existing users are happy and the market’s user base is slated to grow continually.

Drug Operation Busted

In the recent bust, the Finnish customs department stated that vendors in the Valhalla darknet market sold testosterone blockers, erectile dysfunction medications and various other doping drugs.

They were able to import these drugs from other countries such as China and Germany and distribute them through the online marketplace. Some of the drugs were produced locally as well.

A lot of information regarding this case is still missing due to its ongoing status, but the provided press releases help piece together the story.

stack of drugs
The customs department seized nearly $420,000 worth of drugs

The customs department first discovered the drug trafficking ring after they seized nearly $420,000 worth of drugs.

Based on the various reports that have come out, some have speculated that the authorities had already identified or arrested the involved parties long before the first press release was made.

According to these users, the customs authorities are reaching further into their investigation of how deep the drug trafficking ring was orchestrated in the Valhalla Market.

There are many reasons for this speculation. The customs department claims to have gathered data on numerous Valhalla Market users within a short time period.

It seems very unlikely that they were able to gather information about more than 200 users while the pretrial investigation was going on. Therefore, it’s easy to speculate that either the perpetrators of the drug ring kept a neat record of their users or the information was traded for leniency.

While none of this can be confirmed at this point, we will just have to wait for the official report to come out soon.

The authorities, however, also released a statement saying that the preliminary examination had been completed and that the case was being transferred to the prosecutor to initiate legal proceedings.

Various complaints have been lodged recently about the Valhalla site’s reliability and even deposit issues. The fate of the entire market may just bank on how this case develops—Will it still stand unscathed or will it bear the fate of the Silk Road? However, Valhalla Market is still up and running.

Well-Known Drug Vendor on Valhalla Market, Arrested

drug trafficking
Douppikauppa, a Finnish drug dealer on Valhalla market topples after being arrested – although he thought he wouldn’t get caught.

It’s not everyday that authorities get to bust such a big timer when it comes to drug trafficking. But indeed they did, in the case of one particular Finnish national.

Back in August 2016, authorities arrested three people involved in a large drug ring operating on Valhalla Market—caught with over €1 million worth of drugs in their possession.

One of these men, operating under the Douppikauppa moniker, had been particularly active on Valhalla Market, one of the most prolific underground darknet markets.

Douppikauppa was a well-known vendor, dealing in a wide variety of illicit drugs including LSD, MDMA, heroin and cocaine.

On Valhalla Market, Douppikauppa had been operating since 2013, with a history of many transactions and a good reputation.

Over a year before his arrest, Douppikauppa gave an interview to the Iranian-Finnish celebrity Arman Alizad, for a book that he was writing—Riisuttu Suomi, a series of interviews with people from different and interesting backgrounds.

What the interview shows is a clever, university educated 30-year-old who became interested in the drug trade after wanting to get a better supply of drugs to Finland.

With a day job that paid well, it was more about having accessible drugs for Douppikauppa rather than trying to make money.

He saw a gap in the market, and since the online darknet market trade was becoming quite popular, this is where he and a friend set up shop—on Valhalla Market.

Valhalla Market was originally a Finnish only site, known as Silkkkitie. But now it has gone multi-national.

Douppikauppa was able to purchase large quantities of drugs at a low price and sell through Valhalla Market to the people of Finland.

He even gave out LSD for free to customers, since they just wanted to get better drugs to Finland in the first place.

After a little while, Douppikauppa’s shop became the largest of its kind on Valhalla Market.

Illegal drugs written in black background by chalk
They purchase large quantities of drugs at a low price and sell through Valhalla Market to the people of Finland

Douppikauppa comes off as a fierce proponent of the benefits of taking psychoactive drugs; LSD in particular. Hence, the free doses that were shipped.

He believes that the benefits of using them can help everyone, from those suffering mental illnesses to those having a creativity block.

He also appears to be fairly responsible, not wanting to sell drugs to drug addicts and recommending alternate resources to those he believes are having issues with their use.

During the interview, Douppikauppa outlines the setup of the darknet market business. It involves a few smaller shops with employees to handle transactions.

Interested buyers could obtain drugs from these shops within the same day as purchasing, with couriers dropping packages over Finland, ready for the buyer to pick up. This process is known as terrain caching.

At the time of the interview, Douppikauppa was not stressed about being caught by the authorities, although he did know that there was a chance that it could happen.

He, in fact, states that he doesn’t think he would get caught, although we now know that did indeed happen. He seemed to indicate that he was prepared to go to jail if it ever came to that.

The interview paints a picture of a man slightly stressed by his double life that not even his wife knows about.

Still, he seemed to be enjoying the ride, meeting drug kingpins, managing his flourishing business on Valhalla Market and spending money.

Like many of his peers on darknet markets, Douppikauppa got into the scene simply because he wanted to do something good for people, even though it was related to illegal drugs.

He wanted to help out others and wasn’t interested in the money to begin with, although the cash flow no doubt sweetened the deal considerably.

For the crimes committed in Finland, this type of scenario amounts to 7 to 13 years in prison. In some other countries, it would be much longer or even result in the death penalty.

It is important to keep in mind that while many escape the arm of the law when trafficking in drugs online (usually those that don’t operate for too long), others, like Douppikauppa who operated on Valhalla Market, are ultimately caught.

They end up facing long prison sentences for their crimes.

While the high life can be exciting, jail would almost certainly not be, as this man will be experiencing now.

Payment Methods Used on Valhalla Market

Cryptocurrency is a digital asset
Finnish-based Valhalla Market ensures reliable service for its users by offering three payment methods—escrow, multisig and finalize early options.

Considering the rapid shifts in technological developments, and everyday changes in the darknet scene, it might seem hard for a darknet market to keep up with these shifts while at the same time ensuring high safety for its users, high quality of its products, and after all, high profit for itself. Not everyone can succeed in this.

However, Finish-based Valhalla Market, led by renowned Kapteeni, seems to be on point with its successful business maintenance. In fact, he likes to say of his market that it’s “resilient as hell.”

The main policy of product-selling on Valhalla Market is that users do no harm to third parties, and that with notes and warnings in addition to the quality of the products, users are aware of the products’ effects.

Valhalla Market offers two product categories: drugs and other products. These can be browsed through a refined search, one of which displays listings by payment methods.

Reliable payment methods

Valhalla Market allows three payment methods. These include Escrow/Multisig/FE, Escrow/Multisig, and Multisig Only. Not everyone is familiar how these work, so here is the short breakdown of what each method means and how you can use them.

Escrow – mediating the business

Escrow is the term usually applied to real estate business in the United States. In terms of the internet, escrow is enabled when users place money under the control of a licensed, independent third party. This way, both buyer and seller are protected when a transaction is made. Once the both parties confirm that the transaction is completed under the set terms, money can be released.

On darknet markets, escrow works like this: a buyer orders the product and the money is placed on the website. Once the purchased item is delivered, the buyer gives a notice upon a successful finalization, and Valhalla Market releases the money to the seller. This stops vendors from taking money without delivering the product.

Multisig – fostering the cooperation

Multisig means that the transaction requires approval from more than one user; hence it requires more than one key in order to authorize a Bitcoin transaction. Signatures required are the seller’s, the buyer’s and Valhalla Market’s system.

Such practice requires cooperation of multiple parties, thus leading to better business, shared responsibility and respect of common values. Given the values practiced on the market, like user-oriented interface, multilingual service and good ratings, it is not a wonder that all three payment methods include multisig option. This way, everyone operating on the Valhalla Market has to be considerate towards their community because everyone’s personal business directly depends on someone else.

Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and a digital payment system.
Multisig means that the transaction requires approval from more than one user; hence it requires more than one key in order to authorize a Bitcoin transaction.

Finalize Early –proving the trust

FE stands as an abbreviation for Finalize Early. This means that a vendor has the opportunity to ask for the transaction to be finalized early.

Moreover, this would allow the vendor to have the escrowed payment transferred to themselves even in the case when the set terms are not yet met. Even though Don’t Finalize Early!” is the golden rule every user venturing to a darknet market should have in mind, Valhalla Market would not offer this method if it would alter its reputation, or would in any way compromise the safety of its clients.

On the contrary, as Valhalla Market functions under an invite-only system, this means that those operating on it have already gained certain credibility from the market’s administrators.

After all, some of the main reasons for founding Valhalla Market in the first place were frequent exit scams and poor treatment of users by other markets. Exit scams are not associated with Kapteeni and Valhalla Market.

Innovation, improvement, ideology

Currently, the market holds the crown of being Scandinavia’s biggest darknet market to date. It started as Silkkitie in 2013. Two years after its founding, Silkkitie was rebranded into Valhalla Market and its rapid growth was noted. It turned from Finnish-only to international and English-operating, soon to start introducing other languages.

This kind of innovation seems promising not only for the future expansion of the market, but also for the comfort of its clients and quality of the service. If something infuriates Kapteeni, it is unfair and violent business. Valhalla Market keeps up with innovations so that such business can be reduced and annulated.

As the market develops, there surely is a possibility of further innovations. There is already auctioning for product(s) that the market allows users (although, not much used by the vendors). As it seems, shopping at Valhalla Market is both safe and fun!

What Is A Darknet Market?

Enter Darknet
Learn what a darknet market is, what people buy and sell on these mysterious sites, how payment is made and how you can access them.

The internet is full of surprises. We’re not just talking about that pop up offering you $20 off your order of that new coat you were planning on purchasing anyway.

What we’re referring to here are darknet markets, a collection of online marketplaces that are only accessible to those in the know, and can contain a wealth of surprises.

Here we take you through just what a darknet market is, what is for sale on the market and how anyone with an internet connection can access it.

A darknet market is another internet marketplace

You can liken a darknet market to other online marketplaces such as Ebay, Amazon, and AliBaba. The setup is very similar. On both types of markets you have:

  • Sellers
  • Buyers
  •  Product or service listings
  • Feedback systems (star ratings) for both sellers and buyers
  • Site administrators to moderate fraudulent activity

There are small differences between the two; however, this is the basis of a darknet market.

Darknet markets can only be accessed via the dark web

Unlike other internet marketplaces such as Ebay, you cannot access a darknet market through the “regular” internet.

This means if you type the URL of a darknet market into a regular browser address bar (like Chrome), you won’t be able to see the site.

Darknet markets exist only on the dark web, a part of the internet only accessible via special software. The most common software used to access the dark web is Tor.

If you download the Tor browser bundle and start up the Tor browser, then you can type in a darknet market website address into the address bar and be able to access the website.

Tor is a software developed to encrypt data over network connections so that neither machine on either end of a darknet connection knows who each other is, and no one on the network can see the data being passed along.

This, in essence, makes both parties anonymous, and makes the data the two parties are communicating unintelligible to anyone except the two of them.

You can access both “regular” internet websites, and dark web websites with the Tor browser.

The dark web is thus deemed a good method of communication for those who:

  • live in countries where people have restricted freedom of speech (as no one can snoop on any private internet conversations)
  • are whistleblowing, and require their identities to be secret
  • are engaging in illegal activities and want to stay hidden from the gaze of law officials
  • are concerned about governments or companies gathering user browsing data

There are many other reasons that people choose to use the dark web, too.

They’re usually full of illegal products and services

DARK NET text, on red rectangle stamp sign.
The internet is full of surprises. We’re not just talking about that pop up offering you $20 off your order of that new coat you were planning on purchasing anyway.

If you go browsing through a darknet market you’re unlikely to run into listings for clothes, homeware items and concert tickets like you would on “regular” internet marketplaces.

While there are some listings like this, the majority of darknet market posts are for illegal products and services, with a major emphasis on drugs.

While these sites carry illegal drugs, such as heroin and cocaine, there are also darknet listings for controlled substances, such as oxycodone and Ritalin.

Other illegal items and services include such things as bomb making materials, hacking guides, fraudulent credit card and Netflix details, and hitmen for hire.

You use digital money to pay for goods and services

Unlike regular online marketplaces, which generally offer the payment options of credit card, PayPal, bank transfer or cash on delivery, the majority of darknet marketplaces accept only digital currency as payment.

A standard darknet market will accept only Bitcoin in a sale transaction; however, others may provide a few other digital currency options such as Litecoin or Ethereum.

Bitcoin exists purely in the digital realm, and the currency has no physical element like regular money. Bitcoin transactions are performed in a distributed manner, across a number of computers working together.

The currency has gained a fair amount of traction in recent years and has made some inroads, as it is not tied to any one country’s economy—it’s a global currency.

If you’re thinking about having a browse around a darknet market to see what it’s like, then you will need to use a Tor browser to do so. Some of the more popular current markets are AlphaBay, Dream Market and Valhalla.

You are urged to use caution when accessing these markets. Always use verified website addresses for the market, use fake identities and do not replicate any usernames or passwords that you use in other places online.

Admin Talks About Valhalla (Silkkitie) Market

Conceptual illustration. Young nerd exploring the Dark net / cartoon style editable flat illustration, clip art
Silkkitie, now Valhalla, is one of the oldest markets on darknet, operating since 2013. Silkkitie is characterized by world-class security, based on its unique features.

Providing maintenance of a market on the dark web and managing its reputation are not easy tasks.

This is something the admin of Finnish-went-international market Silkkitie knows very well.

Thanks to Kapteeni’s guidance and innovations in caring for its users, Silkkitie has survived a number of FBI operations that targeted darknet markets, and has earned a veteran reputation on the dark web.

Since the market’s beginnings in 2013, it has undergone major rebranding—taking a new name, Valhalla, and expanding to a worldwide user base.

What was it like in the beginning? What has this rebranding brought to the already established Silkkitie, feature-wise? What are the plans for the future? Here are some of Kapteeni’s thoughts on these matters.

New Name, New Features

Due to effective restrictions of Finnish customs and the poor state of street markets in Finland, there was a need to form a darknet marketplace that can cunningly evade law enforcement agencies and secure safe shipments to Finnish clients.

This led to the founding of Silkkitie in 2013, as its admin states.

Two years after its kick off,the marketplace was given a more symbolic name, Valhalla, in 2015.

The reason for this rebranding is mainly because non-Finnish speakers were having difficulties pronouncing the name Silkkitie.

There were also negative associations related to already-closed markets.

Its new name refers to resilience in Nordic mythology.

In addition to this, the new market offers some innovative and unique features.

Innovations in the Internalization Process

Internet crime concept.Hacker on dark blue digital background
Providing maintenance of a market on the dark web and managing its reputation are not easy tasks.

Frustrated with greediness of other admins and exit scams, Kapteeni recognized Silkkitie’s shift from Finish to English as an efficient way to internationally claim its reputation based the trust it had gained among Finnish clients.

This shift inevitably came with a twist in accessing the market.

Similar to how Odin chooses Vikings to enter Valhalla, Silkkitie functions as invite-only market for two main reasons.

Due to expansive internalization of the market, it was essential to introduce growth control that can balance out the pace of the growth without turning Silkkitie into an out-of-control nightmare.

On the other hand, what was equally important for the admin was to come up with a marketing strategy that can promote the market beyond a local framework of painting graffiti and distributing stickers.

So he introduced a reward system for inviting users. As such, invite-only practice proved equally convenient for both the market and its clientele.

While humbly stating his responsibilities in establishing Silkkitie as one of the longest-running markets, the admin proudly notes which features distinguish Silkkitie from other markets—aside from its renowned, world class security that keeps users safe.

Its user-friendly and client-oriented interface results in numerous benefits, some of which are fast loading times and multisig payments, the ability to filter results by shipping country, and display prices in whichever currency a user chooses.

These are actually quite refreshing options to see on a darknet market. All of these features are undergoing improvement on a regular basis, as Silkkitie is constantly asking for feedback from users, which serves as a base for the market’s future development.

In addition to these little hacks, Silkkitie offers an option to auction products, similarly to Ebay.

This practice not only ensures that both ends will bargain a satisfying price, but the admin says it also brings a little bit of excitement to buyers while bidding for a desired product.

Future Expansion

When asked about future plans for the darknet market, Kapteeni says it’s important to put users’ safety and security as the main priority.

This includes updating the market with innovative solutions that will hopefully contribute to its development.

Internally, Silkkitie pushes the market towards introducing new languages that will allow the service to interact with users’ native languages.

As the number of vendors and buyers in Norway increases, Norwegian will be introduced first. Hopes are also set for more effective support, so that clients will not have to wait for a response for longer than a day.

It is clear that Kapteeni aims to keep Silkkitie present, growing and up-to-date with the evolution of new technologies.

With recent media exposures and a change in user demographics, “there will be interesting times ahead” for Silkkitie, according to the admin.

If you are eager to witness Silkkitie reaching the new milestone, stay tuned.