Seattle-based law firm files fifth lawsuit against Snapchat

A so-called "Snapchat Drug Cartel" has allegedly contributed to the deaths of at least nine minors according to a new lawsuit filed this week in Los Angeles.

The Social Media Victims Law Center filed its fifth lawsuit against Snap, Inc.. It alleged that a number of features on Snapchat allow for a “Snapchat Cartel” to operate, and thus contributed to the deaths nine minors in multiple states.

The lawsuit was filed at the Superior Court of Los Angeles last Wednesday. It is the fifth piece of litigation that the firm has filed against Snap, Inc., since January 2022.

Matthew Bergman, the founder of the Center, stated that Snap, Inc. should be held responsible for failing to notice the many children who die from fentanyl overdoses via illegal drugs obtained through their platform.

In the Center’s latest wrongful death suit, parents are from Florida, California, Pennsylvania and Georgia. The lawsuit alleges that the children of the parents died after they ingested fentanyl-laced drugs through the app.


Bergman stated, “In the eyes the parents, and I hear them repeat this to me repeatedly, if one child is saved through this work, then it’s worth it.” “That’s how we feel, and that’s what we approach it.”

The Center has represented 35 families in similar lawsuits against big-tech companies since its first suit against them.

The latest lawsuit specifically refers to Snapchat’s “My Eyes Only”, and “SnapMap” features. They are claimed to have enabled the illegal sale of counterfeit fentanyl-laced pills.

ISTANBUL (TURKEY) – FEBRUARY 24, 2020: This photo illustration shows a smartphone screen that displays Snapchat’s logo in front a keyboard in Istanbul on February 24, 2020. (Muhammed Enes Yildirim via Getty Images

Bergman stated that drug dealers can use the disappearing message feature to create a kind of a “menu” (of drugs) and send their children to communicate about delivering drugs frequently at someone’s doorsteps. “And they do it knowing that the evidence of the crime will disappear forever , hidden from law enforcement , hidden from parents , and hidden from any accountability.

Rebekah Brown claimed that she found a “menu” of drug offers on Snapchat from her son after his death.

Rebekah Brown reports that Cole Brown, 18, died from fentanyl poisoning after inhaling a fake Percocet pill he purchased via Snapchat on Sept. 2, 2021.

Fox News interview: The mother pointed out a series screenshots taken from her son’s phone. Near a list listing drug offerings, she displayed the words “trusted” and “reliable” in the middle of them.


Brown stated that her son began experimenting with drugs after suffering from depression and the death of his father.

“I never condoned the use of drugs in our home. We weren’t addicts, we weren’t alcoholics. She cried, but she did admit that we got our son help. “Cole [He] wasn’t wanting to die. You know, kids make mistakes. But these days, they’re dying.”

Bergman is in a similar situation, citing the impressionability and youth.

U.S. U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents seized more than 1.2 million fentanyl tablets between two busts Dec. 29.

“Let’s be clear: we don’t condone the selling of illegal drugs, prescription drugs, or drug sales. The attorney stated that we don’t condone this in any way, shape, or form. “But, we know that young people can make poor decisions and they shouldn’t have the death penalty for it. They aren’t looking for fentanyl; they are looking for OxyContin. Percocet is what they are after.

While a spokesperson for Snapchat declined to comment on the ongoing litigation, he said that the company had made concerted attempts over the past two-years to address the issue. These efforts included technology upgrades to detect and eliminate drug dealers, new protections and greater collaboration with law enforcement.

According to the company, over 23% of drug-related complaints received by users in September 2021 related to sales had fallen to 3.3% in December last year.

On March 14, 2022, police officers were called to check on a man who claimed he had been using fentanyl downtown Seattle. The use of this powerful opioid has increased in recent years, particularly in Seattle’s large homeless population. Andrew Lewis, Seattle Councilmember, commissioned a report that found the COVID-19 epidemic put undue stress on Seattle’s shelter system. It also delayed funding for new housing, which led to an increase of homelessness. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images).

Snapchat launched “Family Center”, a tool that allows parents to monitor their children’s activity and make reports. The company has introduced content controls this week to help parents “limit the content that their teens can see on Snapchat.”

Anne Milgram, Administrator at the Drug Enforcement Administration, criticized Snapchat last month during a hearing before the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. She also blamed social media in general

Milgram told the committee that “we are in a very different situation than we were 20-years ago, before social media existed.” “The cartels know that if someone is killed by their deadly fentanyl, there are 100,000,000 other Snapchat users that they can sell their drugs too.”


Milgram later added that she was on social media platforms and saw drug marketing and sales for fake prescription pills, fake Oxys, fake Adderall and fake Percocet. This has been going on for several months.

Milgram stated that the social media platforms’ current efforts to stop illegal drug sales are not sufficient.

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