Canadian man charged with bringing fentanyl into New Jersey: feds

Canadian man charged with bringing fentanyl into New Jersey: feds

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A Canadian national was charged Tuesday with distributing and importing fentanyl to the U.S., including numerous transactions in New Jersey via the dark net, according to federal prosecutors.

Between June 2019 and September 2020, Michael Wozney, a 38-year-old from Etobicoke, Ontario, allegedly operated as a prolific fentanyl distributor on various dark-net marketplaces, engaging in hundreds of transactions, authorities said.

“Wozney shipped his customers’ fentanyl orders in a manner that was designed to evade detection and seizure by border officials and other law enforcement authorities,” .

“In instances where law enforcement officials seized shipments, Wozney reshipped those orders and alerted customers that he was modifying his mailing practices to evade detection,” stated the office of the U.S. attorney for New Jersey.

Wozney allegedly advertised a range of fentanyl products on the dark net, a subsection of the internet inaccessible to most browsers that provides users with anonymity during transactions.

In some ads, the 38-year-old described his fentanyl as “close to pure” and labeled others with warnings such as “DANGEROUS LEVEL,” investigators said.

Wozney is now facing seven counts of distribution of and possession with intent to distribute, as well as seven counts of importation of a controlled substance. Each count carries with it a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, in addition to a $1 million fine.

The suspect was allegedly carrying fentanyl on him when the Royal Canadian Mounted Police detained him in March 2020 following a 19-month manhunt after he escaped from Toronto Pearson International Airport, where police first moved in to make an arrest in 2018.

He escaped by speeding off in a vehicle, forcing the police to temporarily abandon their pursuit for public safety concerns, authroities said at the time.

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