Police in Ottawa area arrest 16 in connection with wholesale drug trafficking

OTTAWA — A nine-month investigation has led to 16 arrests and 138 criminal charges, mainly drug-trafficking counts, in eastern Ontario and Quebec, police said on Tuesday.

The Ontario Provincial Police said they executed 12 search warrants in Ottawa as well as Gatineau, Que., and Luskville, Que., last Thursday with help from the Surete du Quebec.

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Police said they targeted wholesale drug sellers linked with criminal networks in Ontario - including outlaw motorcycle gangs - as well as Ottawa and Quebec-based criminal organizations supplying drugs to mid-level traffickers and street gangs.

"We have aimed to subvert the supply at the top of the network in an effort to have a lasting effect," said Chief Superintendent Paul Mackey, commander of the OPP's organized crime enforcement bureau.

Police said they seized 11.59 kilograms of cocaine, 96 kilograms of illegal cannabis, about 40,000 methamphetamine pills as well as $227,105 in cash.

Five vehicles, a cocaine press and a large quantity of a cutting agent, as well as two long guns, three handguns, a replica firearm and a Taser were also seized, according to police.

Police said that upon arrest, six of the accused were held in custody and the remainder were released with conditions.

They are expected to appear in an Ottawa court on various dates.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 20, 2020.

© Kipling Citizen