June 2013 marked the beginning of an ongoing battle with vendors/members that purchased products from an illegal shop called Blackmarket Reloaded. Taking on the names CherryFlavor and WorldWideArms, the two criminals successfully created an anonymous platform for operating their underground business.
Their creativity didn’t stem from their “original” aliases though. Instead, Gerren Johnson and William Jackson used their imagination in the delivery of the illegal goods. Instead of throwing the merchandise in a box and sending it on its way, the two took time to insert the guns into various technological devices – like DVD players and karaoke machines.
After further investigation, an additional three suspects were uncovered:
“Intelligence analysis, as well as a massive audit of internationally-shipped parcels originating from several suspect U.S. Post Offices, resulted in the identification of the individuals in the CherryFlavor group. Three defendants; Sherman Jackson, Brendan Person, and Gerren Johnson, were located in Atlanta, Georgia. A fourth defendant, William Jackson, lived in East Point, Georgia.”
Using the website OutDoorTraders for their firearm purchases, the venders would then upload their new products to black markets like Blackmarket Reloaded, Utopia, and Agora Market for resale. Despite the challenge – and risk – in ordering off the black market, the products were very popular.
Wayne Dixie, an employee of the Atlanta Field Division (ATF), elaborated on the topic,
“Organized criminal groups often rely on the availability of weapons to carry out their activities; thus, the market for illegal firearms around the world. ATF will aggressively and acutely target any individuals who seek to diminish the general welfare of our communities with illegal firearms trafficking.”
The 28-year-old (Johnson) and the 29-year-old (Jackson) were arraigned at the end of last month (May 24th, 2017). They were seen before U.S. Magistrate Judge Justin Anand.
“[Both] were indicted by federal grand jury on May 3, 2017. Sherman, Jackson and Brendan Person previously were arrested, and both have entered pleas of guilty.”