SINCE March 2020, the Region of Peel has experienced an increase in incidents of high-end vehicle thefts, often involving the use of weapons and threats of violence by the suspects.
In some instances, suspects were responding to advertisements for the sale of a vehicle. In others, the suspects would find cars on roadways and intentionally cause a minor rear-end collision. It is believed this criminal organization were involved in over 20 high end vehicle thefts and carjackings which occurred throughout the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).
These were violent crimes and developing a response strategy were a priority for the Peel Regional Police and their partners. Over the past several months, investigators from the Peel Regional Police Central Robbery Bureau, with assistance from members of York Regional Police, Halton Regional Police, Toronto Police Service and the Ontario Provincial Police identified several suspects in relation to this violent series of carjackings.
Over the course of the last several weeks, numerous search warrants were executed and a total of eight suspects have been charged with 47 offences. The seized property includes eight high-end vehicles along with over $30,000 in cash, keys for other high-end vehicles, and approximately one kilogram of fentanyl and a quantity of cocaine.
The total value of seized property is approximately $1.1 million.
Deputy Chief Nick Milinovich said, “This is an incredibly violent crime which threatens our community’s safety and results in severe trauma for our victims. It will not be tolerated and is a priority for our service. The results of this project are demonstration of that commitment from our investigators, policing partners, and the community. Collectively, we will have an impact.”
The following is a list of those arrested and charged are:
* Harison Wijayawickrama, a 24-year-old man from Mississauga, has been charged with 20 different criminal offences, including robbery, wear a disguise, dangerous operation, theft of motor vehicle and fail to comply with court order.
* Mehki Hyman, a 20-year-old man from Whitby, has been charged with 13 different criminal offences, including robbery, use imitation firearm, wear a disguise, dangerous operation, obstruct Peace officer and fail to comply with court order.
* Andrew Drever, a 27-year-old man from Brampton, has been charged with three counts of robbery, two counts of possession for the purpose for cocaine and fentanyl and possession of property obtained by crime.
* Manjot Grewal, a 23-year-old man from Brampton, has been charged with possession of property obtained by crime.
* Abishan Jegatheesan, a 22-year-old man from Brampton, has been charged with three counts of robbery and breach probation order.
* Lovepreet Gill, a 23-year-old man from Brampton, has been charged with possession of property obtained by crime.
* Tanhar Rashid, a 27-year-old man from Mississauga, has been charged with possession of property obtained by crime.
Wanted on a warrant for the offence of robbery is Rodel Seelochan, a 27-year-old man from Mississauga, who remains outstanding.
Peel Regional Police remind the public of the following safety tips to prevent them from becoming a victim to this type of incident:
- If you believe you were intentionally contacted by another vehicle, remain in your car and dial 9-1-1
- If you are involved in an accident, exit the car and remove the keys from the ignition
- Report any suspicious activity, especially if you think someone is following you
- Do not attempt to stop the fleeing motor vehicle
Anyone with information on these incidents or potential dashcam video of these incidents are asked to call investigators with the Central Robbery Bureau at 905-453–2121, ext. 3410. Information may also be left anonymously by calling Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477) or by visiting PeelCrimeStoppers.ca.