Law enforcement authorities in Cleburne County, Arkansas arrested a 22-year-old man on charges that he’d been using the U.S. Postal Service to run an interstate marijuana distribution ring. According to local reports coming out of Arkansas, Christian Olson has been receiving shipments of high-grade marijuana every week through the mail.
Olson allegedly paid his supplier $6,000 for each purchase and ended up selling the pot in Arkansas for huge profits. Authorities estimate he was netting more than $16,000 every month.
“We don’t know how long this has been going on, but it’s been going for a while,” said Lieutenant Phil Burnham of the Cleburne County Sheriff’s Office.
“It’s pretty high-grade marijuana. It’s a lot different than the marijuana you’d grow out here in your backyard.”
Authorities are pretty sure the marijuana was grown somewhere in California. The return address on the packages was for a vacant house in California that’s currently up for sale.
Apparently, Olson would pay his unknown supplier using Bitcoin.
Since Bitcoin allows people to exchange funds online without having to use a bank directly, it can be a relatively discreet way to send money.
After the Bitcoin payment had been made, Olson’s California-based accomplice would then send him a box full of top shelf cannabis.
To avoid being caught, Olson and his supplier used a carefully planned packaging technique.
The marijuana was first sealed in Ziploc bags, a quarter of a pound per bag. The plastic baggies were then wrapped in a layer of tin foil.
The foil packages were placed inside an industrial plastic bucket, which was itself put inside a standard shipping box.
The packages Olson received each week typically contained right around three pounds of what authorities have said hydroponically grown cannabis.
Olson has been released from the Cleburne County Jail. But he is now facing charges at both the state and federal level.
It’s not unheard of for people to use the U.S. Postal Service as a method for shipping marijuana and other illegal drugs to different parts of the country.
And every so often stories surface about people accidentally getting mysterious, “strange smelling” packages delivered to their home.
That exact thing happened to a family living in Arlington, Virginia last fall. Shortly after moving into a new home, the family discovered a package on their front porch. The box was filled with seven pounds of marijuana.