Toronto police say 27 people have been arrested in connection to a drug trafficking ring operating primarily in southern Ontario.
Authorities say the year-long investigation led to the seizure of nearly 300 kilograms of various controlled substances, eight firearms and more than $2.3 million in cash.
“This is pretty sophisticated organization. We’re satisfied we made a significant dent in the drug trade,” Supt. Gord Sneddon told reporters on Thursday. “Not naive enough to believe that we made a very significant dent. But we made a significant dent to this particular organization.”
Police say the amount of drugs seized represents a street value in excess of $14 million.
Multiple law enforcement agencies were involved in the investigation, nicknamed Project Beyond, including York Regional Police and the Canada Border Services Agency.
“What we’re alleging is that this has been the work of criminal organization that’s been working within Ontario primarily. But as the project name implies, beyond spreads much further,” said Sneddon.
“And that range of influences has spread into the United States. We have worked with Drug Enforcement Administration, particularly in New York state.”
Those arrested in the probe face multiple criminal organization related charges and drug trafficking based charges. Police say one of the accused, identified as Kevin Er, was the leader of the group.
Sneddon said the investigation is still ongoing and police are seeking to seize further assets from the group.
“That includes their bank accounts, condominiums, phones, watches and money counters,” he said.
VIDEO: Toronto police say leader of alleged criminal organization resided in Toronto, York Region