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10 charged in Alberta cocaine distribution network linked to ‘outlaw bikers’

Click to play video 'Major resources went into Hells Angels drug investigation: ALERT' Major resources went into Hells Angels drug investigation: ALERT
WATCH ABOVE: ALERT said a lot of resources and time went into an investigation centered around a cocaine distribution network – Aug 30, 2018

Ten people are facing 45 charges after a year-long investigation into a cocaine distribution network that police said was linked to a member of the Hells Angels and support club members.

Project Entry began in March 2017 after members of the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams received information about the role of outlaw bikers in drug trafficking.

WATCH BELOW: ALERT said a year-long investigation revealed a group, including a Hells Angels member, demonstrated the ability to move large amounts of cocaine.

Click to play video 'Alberta drug trafficking group moved large amount of drugs: ALERT' Alberta drug trafficking group moved large amount of drugs: ALERT
Alberta drug trafficking group moved large amount of drugs: ALERT – Aug 30, 2018

Police allege those involved filled “various roles” within a cocaine distribution network that ran through Edmonton, Spruce Grove, Cold Lake, Whitecourt and Grande Prairie.

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The charges include instruction of a criminal organization, participating in a criminal organization, conspiracy to traffic cocaine and other drugs, firearms and property-related offences.

READ MORE: $1M worth of cocaine, cash seized in Edmonton and Fort McMurray drug network bust

Police believe it’s the first time the charge of instruction of a criminal organization has been laid against someone in Alberta. ALERT alleged William McCabe, a Hells Angels Westridge (Edmonton) member, oversaw the cocaine trafficking operations and facilitated the distribution of drugs through the communities.

“When we delve into the investigations of criminal organization, organized crime groups, obviously they’re a more sophisticated level, so it requires more resources by the police financially, personnel wise,” Supt. Chad Coles told reporters of the significance of that charge.

WATCH BELOW: ALERT says charging a Hells Angels member with running a criminal organization is significant.

Click to play video 'Charges against Alberta Hells Angels member significant: ALERT' Charges against Alberta Hells Angels member significant: ALERT
Charges against Alberta Hells Angels member significant: ALERT – Aug 30, 2018

During the investigation, police seized five kilograms of cocaine, half a kilogram of the buffing agent phenacetin, cannabis resin and a handgun.

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Multiple vehicles and motorcycles were also seized, along with $13,000 cash proceeds of crime.

Items seized during an ALERT investigation into a cocaine distribution network involving members of the Hells Angels and support clubs. Morris Gamblin/Global News
Drugs seized during an ALERT investigation into a cocaine distribution network involving members of the Hells Angels and support clubs. Morris Gamblin/Global News
A firearm seized during Project Entry, an investigation into a cocaine distribution network. Morris Gamblin/Global News
Two of the people charged in the investigation are alleged to be members of the Dirty Few, a support club for the Hells Angels. Morris Gamblin/Global News
Drugs seized during an ALERT investigation into a cocaine distribution network involving members of the Hells Angels and support clubs. Morris Gamblin/Global News
ALERT provides details about a year-long drug trafficking investigation involving a Hells Angels member, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018. Kendra Slugoski, Global News
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ALERT says it's broken down a cocaine distribution network involving a Hells Angels member, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018. Kendra Slugoski, Global News

According to ALERT, a kilogram of cocaine can sell for as much as $70,000 on the street. The drugs seized in this bust would have been worth up to $350,000.

WATCH BELOW: ALERT said a drug trafficking investigation involving a member of the Hells Angels resulted in the seizure of drugs, cash and a handgun.

Click to play video 'ALERT seizes drugs, cash and handgun' ALERT seizes drugs, cash and handgun
ALERT seizes drugs, cash and handgun – Aug 30, 2018

Coles called the investigation a “complete disruption” of the reach of the network that was allegedly moving wholesale quantities of cocaine across the province on a regular basis.

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The people who have been charged are listed below. (Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the full list of charges).

  • William McCabe, a 47-year-old man from Spruce Grove;
  • Shane Daly, a 39-year-old man from Spruce Grove;
  • Joseph Collicutt, a 32-year-old man from Grande Prairie;
  • Pascal Jaques, a 40-year-old man from Cold Lake;
  • Theresa Acker, a 42-year-old woman from Spruce Grove;
  • Anton Petrowitz, a 36-year-old man from Calgary;
  • Clinton Thomas, a 33-year-old man from Parkland County;
  • Nicholas Stovell, a 38-year-old man from Cold Lake;
  • Nicholas Delibasic, a 46-year-old man from Cold Lake; and
  • Larissa Ausmus, a 31-year-old woman from Spruce Grove.

WATCH BELOW: ALERT said William McCabe of Spruce Grove was the key figure in an extensive Alberta cocaine distribution network.

Click to play video 'Hells Angels, support club involved in drug trafficking ring: ALERT' Hells Angels, support club involved in drug trafficking ring: ALERT
Hells Angels, support club involved in drug trafficking ring: ALERT – Aug 30, 2018

Daly and Jacques were allegedly members of the Dirty Few Lakeland chapter, a support club for the Hells Angels.

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Police said support clubs are typically used to carry out lower-level work for the Hells Angels, including drug trafficking and expanding territory to other markets.

READ MORE: 2 teens charged after RCMP seize kilo of pot along with coke, heroin and $50K from northwest Alberta homes

Chief Supt. Ian Lawson said groups like the Hells Angels also use support groups as a type of “insulation.”

“By using a support group it provides some challenges to an investigation to identify who exactly is providing the direction to it.”

Supt. Chad Coles and Chief Supt. Ian Lawson stand behind a table of items seized during an ALERT investigation into a cocaine distribution network that allegedly involved members of the Hells Angels and support clubs. Morris Gamblin/Global News

During the investigation, police seized five kilograms of cocaine, half a kilogram of the buffing agent phenacetin, cannabis resin and a handgun.

Multiple vehicles and motorcycles were also seized, along with $13,000 cash proceeds of crime.

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Coles called the investigation a “complete disruption” of the reach of the network that was allegedly moving wholesale quantities of cocaine across the province on a regular basis.

“The weight of these charges is quite significant and ALERT is very confident in the quality of the investigation brought forward before the courts,” he added.

READ MORE: Edmonton police seize $500K in drugs after lengthy investigation

The arrests were made between July 25 and 30.

There are six Hells Angels clubs across the province of Alberta – three in Edmonton, two in Calgary and one in Red Deer. Police said there are now about 16 support clubs across the province.

WATCH BELOW: Police have busted an alleged crime ring, which they say is connected to the Hells Angels. It has tentacles in Edmonton, Spruce Grove, Cold Lake, Whitecourt and Grande Prairie. Kendra Slugoski has more.

Click to play video '10 charged in Alberta cocaine distribution network linked to ‘outlaw bikers’' 10 charged in Alberta cocaine distribution network linked to ‘outlaw bikers’
10 charged in Alberta cocaine distribution network linked to ‘outlaw bikers’ – Aug 30, 2018

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