Feds: 'Peter the Great' darknet drug suspects linked to 2 deaths - FOX Carolina 21

Feds: 'Peter the Great' darknet drug suspects linked to 2 deaths

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Ana Barrero arrives for sentencing (May 11, 2018/FOX Carolina) Ana Barrero arrives for sentencing (May 11, 2018/FOX Carolina)
Theodore Vitaliy Khleborod and Ana Milena Barrero (Source: SPartanburg Co. Detention) Theodore Vitaliy Khleborod and Ana Milena Barrero (Source: SPartanburg Co. Detention)
Evidence gathered by officials investigating case. (Source: Portland Police Bureau) Evidence gathered by officials investigating case. (Source: Portland Police Bureau)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

The second of two suspects charged in connection with a drug trafficking scheme on the darknet appeared in federal court on Friday.

Ana Barrero, 24, appeared in court in Greenville where she was sentenced for her role in the crime. Barrero and her boyfriend, 28-year-old Theodore Vitaliy Khleborod, were arrested in April 2017 after an 18-year-old in Portland, Oregon was found dead near a package of synthetic opioid U-47700, also known as "Pink."

Barrero and Khleborod sold Pink on the darknet under the alias "PeterTheGreat" and used the U.S. Postal Service to distribute the opioid throughout the country. ICE Homeland Security investigators raided their residence on South Church Street following the death.

Investigators said Barrero would buy pregnancy tests at dollar stores to disguise the drug during shipment. Buyers paid for the drugs using Bitcoin on a dark web site called "AlphaBay."

Before the raid, federal agents said the couple sent out 136 parcels while they were being surveilled over the course of three days.

SLIDESHOW: Evidence presented in court for 'Peter the Great' darknet drug investigation

At Friday's sentencing, officials said drugs distributed by Khleborod and Barrero also resulted in the death of 37-year-old Matthew Lust in Minnesota and great bodily injury to a man who overdosed in Lansdale, Pennsylvania.

After the PA man was revived with NARCAN, authorities said he told them he purchased the drugs from Peter the Great.

During the raid, authorities found records that Khleborod had shipped drugs to Lust and the overdose victim. They also found a code book for selling drugs on the darknet.

The couple was indicted by a grand jury in May 2017.

Khleborod, who was indicted on one county of possession with intent to distribute U-47700, was later found dead in his cell at the Spartanburg County Detention Center. The coroner said it appeared Khleborod took his own life.

Barrero was indicted on conspiracy to distribute U-47700 and two counts of use of mail system in commission of felony to distribute U-47700. 

She plead guilty to the conspiracy to distribute charge. 

She was sentenced to 15 years in prison followed by three years of supervised release. The judge reduced her sentence from a mandatory 20-year minimum sentence since she cooperated with the investigation and had no prior convictions.

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