A 32-year-old Toronto man is facing criminal charges in connection to what authorities say is the “largest-value” drug seizure in Toronto police history following a six-week investigation nicknamed Project Polar.
Police said the accused was in possession of 93 kilograms of drugs, including cocaine, crystal meth and MDMA, with a total street value of $8.98 million.
“In the drug business, in the drug culture, if you are entrusted with this amount of product or controlled substances, then you’re at a certain very high level, just due to the financial and nature of the substance,” Acting Inspector Steve Watts told reporters Thursday morning.
Police said the drugs were seized at a residence in Toronto as well as from a pick-up truck with a hidden compartment.
“It’s what we call a trap vehicle. They are custom built for different types of vehicles. The trap was located behind the rear seat in between the front of the flatbed,” Watts said.
VIDEO: Police seize $8.9M worth of drugs in ‘Project Polar’ bust
Watts said the drugs seized were not manufactured in Ontario and was brought in externally.
“Obviously there’s a larger organized crime component to drug dealing and drug importation and trafficking within Toronto,” he said.
Nicholas Shouldice, who police said did not have a criminal record, was arrested and charged with two counts of possession for the purpose cocaine, possession for the purpose of MDMA and possession for the purpose crystal meth.
Police would not reveal details on how authorities were led to the accused but that the investigation is ongoing.
“There were various investigative techniques that were utilized. When he was arrested, he was arrested without incident,” Watts said.
VIDEO: Police announce largest cocaine bust in Toronto history