Ten people have been arrested after an investigation into Edmonton’s Hells Angels motorcycle club led by the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT).
“Project Al-Wheels” allege the club’s members and associates were involved in theft, re-vinning and trafficking of various stolen trailers and recreational vehicles. Re-vinning refers to the process of giving vehicles false ownership histories and identification numbers.
The investigation dates back to October 2015. A total of 15 search warrants were carried out in Edmonton, Grande Prairie, Alberta Beach, Gunn, Onoway, Morinville, Legal, Ryley, Sherwood Park, Red Deer, St. Albert and Langley, B.C.
Over $1 million in stolen property and 21 firearms were seized in the investigation, including:
- 17 travel trailers
- 3 pick-up trucks
- 6 all-terrain vehicles
- 1 snowmobile
- 2 dirt bikes
- 18 rifles
- 2 shotguns
- 1 handgun
Officers believe the vehicles were stolen from houses and businesses and then fraudulently registered. They would then be sold amongst Hells Angels members and associates at steep discounts, ALERT said.
Police believe in some cases insurance fraud was also being committed.
The 10 people arrested are facing upwards of 300 criminal charges and officers believe more arrests will be made.
The following people were arrested in connection with the investigation:
- Lawrence Cotter, 41,of Alberta Beach
- Bobby Dodman, 42, of Red Deer
- Christopher Escott, 32, of Edmonton
- Mark Funk, 38, of St. Albert
- Laura Hawkridge, 41, of Alberta Beach
- Jacob Jenkins, 38, of Gunn
- Kane Laplante-Racine, 29 of Strathcona County
- Frank Preeper, 42, of Morinville
- Julien Roussel, 58, of Edmonton
- Anthony Shaw, 56, no fixed address, arrested in Grande Prairie