Joint police investigation shuts down Ontario drug trafficking ring, seizes $205,000 in drugs and charges 10

By Lynda Powless

Editor 

BRANTFORD ONT-A seven month long joint police investigation has resulted in10 people being charged and $205,000 worth of illegal substances seized in the  dismantling of a fentanyl trafficking ring that was shipping illegal drugs throughout northern Ontario.

A three police force joint investigation took $205,000 worth of illegal substances off the streets in major investigation. (Police submitted photo)

Brantford Police Services, Haldimand Norfolk County Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) and Sault Ste. Marie police launched “Project Carbon Copy” in October of 2021 in a move to shut down an organized crime group that was distributing  large amounts of fentanyl from southern Ontario to Northern Ontario Brantford Police said in a statement Wednesday, April 20, 2022.

  The massive police investigation and shutdown of a major drug trafficking group, seizure of illegal narcotics and currency was made possible, Brantford Police said, as a result of funding provided by the Ontario government and support from the Criminal Intelligence Service Ontario.
 Brantford Police said the combined forces received judicial authorization April 14, 2022, to search five separate residences and a motor vehicle. Just after midnight on April 14, 2022, officers with the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service initiated a traffic stop on a rental vehicle as it entered into the City of Sault Ste. Marie. Police arrested the four occupants of the motor vehicle. A search revealed 12 ounces of suspected fentanyl with a street value of $168,000 concealed within the vehicle. Four people, all of southern Ontario, have been charged with possession of fentanyl for the purpose to traffic, contrary to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act:

Charged were: Skyler Beal, 26 of Brantford, Ontario, Jamal Gomes, 19, of Brantford, Alexis Rosebrugh, 21 of St. George, Ont., and Drew Pyne, 23 of Brantford.

Within minutes of the Sault Ste. Marie arrests police services simultaneously executed five search warrants in Brantford and Caledonia.

Police raided a Caledonia residence on Arnold Marshall Drive, where Haldimand Norfolk OPP officers seized approximately $45,000 in Canadian currency concealed within a wall of the residence. As a result of the investigation and subsequent search OPP have charged Edison Beal, 26, with possession fentanyl for the purpose to traffick, trafficking in a controlled substance and possession of the proceeds of crime.

The Brantford Police Service searched a Darling Street apartment and located material related to cooking fentanyl.

A third residence associated to Project Carbon Copy, located on Pearl Street, Brantford, was also searched by officers with the Brantford Police Service.

Members of the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service executed a search warrant at a Queen Street West apartment in Sault Ste Marie where they  located quantities of suspected cocaine, fentanyl, crystal methamphetamine and two canisters of oleoresin capsicum (OC spray). As a result of the Sault Ste. Marie search police have charged Shawn Saunders, 43, of Sault Ste. Marie with:

  • Possession of a controlled substance X 4
  • Possession of a weapon contrary to an order X 2
  • Unauthorized possession of a weapon X 2
  • Breach of probation

Officers with the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service also searched an adjoining Queen Street West apartment where officers located a quantity of suspected crack cocaine, fentanyl, and crystal methamphetamine within the residence. Charged with three counts of possession of a controlled substance was Shannon Morin of Sault Ste. Marie .

In a statement police said “Project Carbon Copy will help to minimize the threat to our communities caused by the distribution of controlled substances including synthetic opioids. By disrupting the operation of criminal networks, our goal is to assist our communities by reducing the violence surrounding the trade of illicit substances.”

The statement adds the success of the operation is due to “the outstanding collaboration of policing partners and agencies, Criminal Intelligence Service Ontario, Brantford Police Services, Ontario Provincial Police, and Sault Ste Marie Police Services.”

“In support of the search warrants and arrests on April 14, 2022, the Brantford Police Service would like to recognize the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service and Haldimand Norfolk OPP for their assistance,” the statement said.

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