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Police raids across Montreal target organized crime

MONTREAL – Several police officers spent part of their day at the office of longtime Rizzuto family lawyer, Loris Cavaliere.

Earlier in the day, the legal counsel for some of the top leaders of organized crime had a rude awakening.

About 200 officers from the Montreal police, Sûreté du Québec and the RCMP raided homes and businesses around the city early Thursday morning, busting some of the highest ranking leaders in the Italian Mafia, the Hells Angels, several street gangs and their accomplices.

“We started the investigation on Jan. 1, 2013 and until this day, we had all the equipment, wire taps to do that investigation,” said Benoit Dubé, an SQ organized crime investigator.

Of the 48 people were arrested, many of the suspects are a who’s who of organized crime’s top brass.

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Leonardo Rizzuto, the son of former mob boss Vito Rizzuto, and presumed head of the Montreal mafia, Stefano Sollecito, were arrested.

Gregory Wooley, one of the ring leaders of the Hells Angels, and Maurice ‘Mom’ Boucher, the organization’s former head were also taken in.

His daughter, Alexandra Mongeau was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Boucher was allegedly communicating with his daughter from prison to plot the murder of crime boss Raynald Desjardins in a territorial battle for drugs.

“They were controlling Montreal, north shore and south shore,” said Dubé.

Investigators connected the dots in a web of organized crime, and the suspects were busted on charges related to drug trafficking.

“They got communications from the inside to the outside,” said John Galianos, a former SQ homicide detective.

“So, it’s going to slow down their business and hurt them personally, too. Rather be outside than inside. To them it’s a business.”

Quebec provincial police hope to find additional evidence that could lead to more charges.