More than $500K worth of drugs, cash seized in investigation with ties to Alberta, British Columbia

A number of suspects have been identified in an interprovincial drug investigation that began last year in Lloydminster, Alta., and ended with more than half a million dollars worth of drugs being seized.

The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams said Thursday morning that an investigation began in Lloydminster in May 2021, following an initial drug seizure in the border city.

ALERT then launched Project Deception, which involved partnerships with Lloydminster RCMP, British Columbia’s combined forces special enforcement unit (CFSEU-BC) and the RCMP’s federal serious and organized crime.

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The goal of Project Deception was to “work up the drug supply line and uproot the Edmonton and Kelowna-based suppliers,” ALERT said in a news release Thursday.

Over the course of the investigation, ALERT said drug seizures took place in Lloydminster, Edmonton and Springbrook, Alta., as well as Kelowna and Vernon, B.C. On June 1, 2022, a number of homes were also searched.

“Drug trafficking doesn’t occur in isolation. It is deep-rooted and presents a multitude of threats that ultimately impact many communities,” said ALERT CEO Supt. Marc Cochlin.

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“As we continue our fight against money laundering and drug trafficking, collaboration between policing partners is critical, as organized crime knows no borders,” said Supt. Brent Taylor, with the BC RCMP FSOC financial integrity program.

ALERT said the street value of the drugs and cash is estimated at $571,000. The items seized include:

  • two handguns with ammunition
  • 3,600 grams of cocaine
  • 3,055 grams of suspected buffing agents
  • 1,223 grams of methamphetamine
  • 275 grams of suspected fentanyl
  • $101,888 cash
  • $147,872 in restrained assets, including jewelry

“Law enforcement is well aware that those individuals and groups who engage in drug trafficking and violent criminal activities have no regard for provincial borders,” said Supt. Duncan Pound, deputy operations officer with CFSEU-BC.

“CFSEU-BC is committed to working closely with our partners across Canada to ensure that we are enhancing public safety in British Columbia; the arrests and charges stemming from this ALERT investigation represent a significant enforcement success for BC, Alberta and Canada.”

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ALERT said the investigation is ongoing and investigators are preparing reports and disclosure for Crown Counsel.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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