Large quantities of crystal meth, cocaine seized by RCMP near Kindersley, Sask.
Saskatchewan RCMP made a couple of substantial drug seizures while the Roving Traffic Unit was in the Kindersley area ahead of the long weekend.
Three stops resulted in drug seizures along Highway 7 on April 17 and 18, police said.
The first stop resulted in the seizure of 207 grams of cannabis. The 37-year-old male driver from Summerland, B.C., is charged under the Cannabis Act. The RCMP release does not say what the charge was.
While recreational cannabis is legal in Canada, the maximum a person is allowed to possess is 30 grams.
A second stop on the 17th, also on Highway 7, turned up 61 grams of cannabis, 31 grams of cannabis shatter, and $7,000 in cash hidden inside the vehicle. RCMP said officers became suspicious of potential drug possession during interactions with the pulled-over driver.
A police dog found drugs present in the vehicle.
A 40-year-old man from Saskatoon is charged under the Cannabis Act, and for possession of proceeds of crime.
Officers stopped another vehicle on Highway 7 the next day for improper use of seatbelts. The vehicle tried to turn off onto a gravel road but was stopped, according to police.
Police report several “observations consistent with drug possession”, and the occupants were placed under arrest for possession of a controlled substance.
A search of the vehicle revealed two bags of methamphetamine with a combined weight of one kilogram. Police said that is enough meth for 10,000 hits.
Four more 29 gram packages were found hidden inside the vehicle. Two packages contained cocaine and the other two contained chemicals believed to be used in the production of crack cocaine, police said.
Both the driver and passenger, two Calgary men aged 25 and 23, are charged with possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking. They are scheduled to appear in Kindersley provincial court on July 16.
The Roving Traffic Unit is tasked with improving traffic safety and intercepting travelling criminals.
Kindersley is roughly 200 kilometres southwest of Saskatoon.
Addictions counsellor Rand Teed works with clients from all walks of life, and has been tracking an increased prevalence in meth over the past several years.
He said supply is not the issue with the drug, but demand, when asked about the kilogram of drugs seized by the RCMP.
“There’s probably 10 times as much meth around the province on a regular basis,” Teed said.
“I congratulate the police on trying to combat this, but it’s more of a demand issue than a supply issue. Unfortunately, drug dealers are sort of like playing whack-a-mole. When you get rid of one, two more pop up.”
In Teed’s view, enforcement is just a portion of what needs to be done to address what he called “near epidemic” levels of substance abuse disorders.
“I think what we need to do is do a much better job of educating about early signs, early symptoms of substance problems. The earlier you recognize any problem the earlier it is to treat. We do that with breast cancer and heart problems,” Teed said.
“Unfortunately what often happens here is because of the stigmatization around the issue, people let it go and let it go until it’s really bad, and then it’s much more difficult to treat.”
Teed also raised concerns about barriers gaining treatment in the province, saying if it was the same case for things like a wait to address a heart condition people would be rallying in the streets.
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