ON June 15, a commercial truck driven by a Quebec resident entered Canada in Fort Erie, Ontario, and was referred for a secondary examination The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Southern Ontario Region, discovered and seized approximately 112.5 kg of suspected cocaine inside five duffle bags. The value of this seizure is estimated at $14 million.
The CBSA arrested Pardeep Singh, and transferred him and the suspected cocaine under the custody of RCMP officers from Niagara-on-the-Lake (NOTL) Border Integrity (BI) Team.
The RCMP have charged 24-year-old Singh of LaSalle, Quebec, with importation of a controlled substance. He will appear at the St. Catharines Courthouse, Ontario, on July 9.
Kim Upper, District Director, Fort Erie District Operations, CBSA, said: “The Canada Border Services Agency plays an integral role in keeping our communities safe. Our officers have interrupted the smuggling attempt of a massive amount of narcotics, and have put a full stop to the ripple effect these narcotics would have in neighborhoods across our country. The CBSA is extremely proud of its officers and their ongoing role in safeguarding our borders.”
Superintendent Shawn Boudreau, Officer in Charge, RCMP Border Integrity Program, O Division, said: “The Border Integrity Program is responsible for protecting our border by preventing, detecting, and disrupting cross border criminality. Securing the border contributes to the national security of Canada and protects Canadians from terrorism, organized crime and other border-related criminality. This large drug seizure and the investigation that ensued resulting in an individual being charged, is another example of the RCMP and the CBSA working together to protect our communities by preventing illegal drugs from reaching our streets.”
• If you have information about suspicious cross-border activity, contact the CBSA Border Watch Line at 1-888-502-9060.
• Anyone with information regarding criminal activity is encouraged to contact their local police, the RCMP at 1-800-387-0020 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.
JUST last Saturday (July 3) in our print edition, we published a story on the front page titled: “More and more South Asians in Ontario seem to be getting involved in major criminal activities.”
We wrote in part:
BACK in the 2000s as South Asian gangsters in the Lower Mainland were busy shooting one another month after month in the fight for drug turf and giving their community a bad name, we wondered why it was so different in Ontario where members of the South Asian community seemed to be keeping away from a criminal lifestyle.
However, now the situation in Ontario has changed in a dramatic manner as events over just the past one year clearly bear out.
If you go to the “Ontario” section of our website voiceonline.com, you will be amazed at the number of stories on South Asians being caught by police in different criminal activities as well as the large number of them being involved in big rackets.
Just this week, we carried a story titled: “Mail theft investigation leads to multiple charges against 16 South Asians in Brampton” on our website. Those allegedly involved were from 21 years of age to 43.
But even more serious was the case we reported last week: “Toronto Police seize $61 million in drugs, nine South Asians among those arrested.” The accused were from 25 years of age to 46.
Indeed, even more serious than that case was what we reported in April: “South Asians charged in large-scale international drug trafficking network.” Some 25 South Asians – from 23 years of age to 54 – were charged. As many as 48 firearms were seized.
York Regional Police Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau, in partnership with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Peel Regional Police, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, dismantled a large-scale international drug trafficking network that extended to Western Canada, the United States and India.
These cases are apart from those involving assault, carjacking, shootings and so on. Just over a month ago, seven South Asians were arrested and charged with kidnapping in Mississauga.
Can you imagine how many South Asian families in Ontario have faced the embarrassment of having the names of their relatives splashed in the media just in the past one year!