There are certainly a lot of ways to try and sell drugs (don’t do it, kids). One man, located in Kansas City, Missouri, thought the best way to do so was over the PlayStation Network. The FBI caught wind of his schemes and filed a search warrant to get more information from Sony. The warrant, filed on October 22nd, 2019, asks for the communications of Curtis Alexander, also known as “Speedola20” on PSN. The accusation was that Curtis was using voice and text chat over PlayStation Network to sell cocaine.
Charging $34,000 per kilogram, Alexander seemed to believe he could make a pretty penny. However, not all seems to have gone according to his devious machinations. The FBI conducted a sting operation with an unnamed individual. Messages back and forth between the users, as well as voice chat and the physical transaction between the undercover individual, proved that Alexander was using the PS4 to conduct his business. With evidence in hand, the FBI was able to request and be granted a search warrant for Alexander’s full PSN information and messages. There’s currently no word on if Sony has yet complied with the warrant and granted access to Speedola20’s PSN.
So what information are they asking for? Well, some of it is obvious, like the content of his messages. Some of it seems less so. One thing the FBI requested was a list of the games he’s owned and played, which could perhaps make sense to figure out of this operation went any further. However, they also asked to see his progress in said games. Were the FBI hoping to gather a few tips along the way on how to beat Bloodborne? Doubtful. But if Michael Bay movies have taught me anything, it’s that a reformed criminal can help the government with a lot of strange requests. In all likelihood, the FBI just wants to make sure it is covering its bases on information gathered in order to have an airtight case against the dealer.
The full length of the warrant details the interactions of the sting operation, including Alexander attempting to make additional contact with the undercover individual for further drug trafficking. It also includes transcripts of the messages back and forth, thanks to screenshots from the anonymous individual. The warrant seeks to find additional spokes of the network that Alexander may have had contact with, which is why it asks for his friends lists, real name requests, and extensive information about his time online.
The FBI has worked with Sony in the past in its pursuit of a notorious hacker group. Back in 2014, after Lizard Squad hit both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live with a DDoS around Christmas, the FBI began to investigate the group, leading to several members being arrested and charged with a crime.
[Source: Official Search Warrant]