Ontario drug bust sees 11 people charged, including 2 Sunwing Airlines employees
Two employees with Sunwing Airlines are among 11 people charged in connection with a drug bust spanning southwestern Ontario.
The RCMP said, in assistance with police in Hamilton, Toronto, Durham, Brantford, and Kitchener, project OWoodcraft concluded in a total of 40 charges laid, including trafficking fentanyl, carfentanil, heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and attempting to import cocaine.
The RCMP said they seized approximately 10 kilograms of fentanyl, 1.3 kilograms of heroin, one kilogram of methamphetamine, and 30 kilograms of marijuana.
The street value is estimated to be $10 million, according to police.
Police display a gun that was seized during raids across southern Ontario. (CTV News Kitchener)
RCMP said approximately $400,000 in cash and three vehicles worth about $170,000 each were also seized in the raids.
“This investigation involved Kitchener RCMP infiltrating several high level drug trafficking groups supplying fentanyl and other illicit drugs to markets in the GTA and in southwestern Ontario," Michael LeSage, Criminal Operations Officer for the RCMP’s O Division, told reporters at a news conference.
Police said undercover operations during the investigation saw police purchase approximately nine kilograms of fentanyl and several kilograms of other illicit drugs.
The RCMP announce they've arrested 11 people in drug raids. (CTV News Kitchener)
The investigation also led to the arrest of two Sunwing Airlines employees working at Toronto Pearson International Airport.
The two employees were charged with attempting to import cocaine and trafficking cocaine.
“The RCMP wishes to thank Sunwing Airlines for their assistance during this investigation,” the RCMP said.
“Sunwing's commitment to safety and security was evident and their cooperation was instrumental in bringing this investigation to a successful conclusion.”
Millions of dollars in drugs were siezed in the raids. (CTV News Kitchener)
In a statement, Sunwing Airlines said they have been working closely with RCMP officers during the investigation.
“The safety and security of both our employees and our customers remains our main priority and we have offered our full cooperation to the RCMP to ensure that this matter was brought to a successful conclusion,” the statement said.
“Given that the investigation is ongoing, we are not in a position to make additional comments at this time.”
Derrick Isreal Shand, Verlon Winston Peters, Tim Adam Lodge, Brittany Michelle Crozier, Courtenay Elizabeth Doolittle, Andrej Marek Krawczyk, Gianni Ballestrin, Clint McInnis, Jameal McInnis, Michael Brutto and Jehan Carvalho were all arrested and are facing various charges in connection with the investigation.