3 Toronto police officers face 5 new charges in alleged heroin planting during 2014 arrest
TORONTO — Three of four Toronto police officers charged late last month after allegedly planting heroin in a man’s car following a 2014 traffic stop face five new offences.
Police said Monday 41-year-old Const. Jeffrey Tout has been charged with perjury and two counts of obstructing justice, while 32-year-0ld Const. Benjamin Elliot and 37-year-old Det-Const. Fraser Douglas both face one count of obstructing justice. Taylor was previously charged with two counts of obstructing justice and one count of perjury.
The officers now face a total of 22 charges related to the arrest of Nguyen Son Tran on Jan. 15, 2014 and the ensuing court case in which charges against an alleged drug dealer were stayed after inconsistencies were discovered in the officer’s story.
Investigators alleged two of the officers involved made up a false account of what happened when they pulled Tran over last January during a traffic stop and all four of the accused provided false court testimony.
“They later found heroin in that vehicle. They opened the package. They sprinkled heroin on the inside of his car. They called for forensic identification services.
They then photographed the scene of planted, concocted evidence,” Tran’s lawyer Kim Schofield told Global News last month.
“It occurs far too often. I think the police officers feel they can lie with immunity and maybe this case shows them they can’t.”
Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders said last month that the arrests follow an investigation conducted by the police professional standards unit working with the crown attorney’s office.
He added the officers have been suspended with pay under the Police Services Act and that investigators would “leave no stones unturned” when informed of officers that “have not lived up to the [force’s] high standards and expectations.”
WATCH: Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders confirms 4 Toronto cops arrested, facing total of 17 offences
The charges came just days after Const. James Forcillo was found guilty of attempted murder in the shooting death of Toronto teen Sammy Yatim on a streetcar in 2013.
Mike McCormack, president of the Toronto Police Association, which represents nearly 5,500 uniformed and 2,500 civilian members, said it had been a rough week for the service but stressed that the charges against the four officers are unproven allegations.
Toronto Mayor John Tory told reporters at city hall last month that he had faith in Saunders, the police department and the judicial process as this case unfolds.
The accused officers are scheduled to make a court appearance on March 11.
VIDEO: Toronto Mayor John Tory says he has confidence in Toronto Police Service after four officers charged
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