EPS Acting Supt. Dwayne Lakusta took over the top job at Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) two weeks ago.
Lakusta is replacing Supt. Chad Coles, who had been with ALERT since October 2014 and CEO since April 2017.
Lakusta is a 24-year member of the Edmonton Police Service and previously led the drug and gang enforcement (EDGE) unit. He has also worked as an undercover operator on drug investigations across Alberta.
A native of Fort Saskatchewan, Lakusta had worked in a variety of specialized units within EPS, most notably homicide, professional standards, Project KARE, and as officer in charge of the Edmonton police’s west division, ALERT said.
“His wealth of experience as a veteran member of the Edmonton Police Service and long-time career in law enforcement will be a major asset to ALERT in ensuring Albertans are safe, secure and protected,” Doug Schweitzer, minister of Justice and Solicitor General, said in a statement.
“I would also like to thank outgoing ALERT CEO, Supt. Chad Coles, for his hard work and success during his tenure.”
Lakusta will oversee approximately 300 police officers and civilian staff.
ALERT is a provincially funded agency that investigates serious and organized crime in Alberta, including child exploitation, drug trafficking and gang violence.
Members include Alberta Sheriffs, Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Lethbridge Police Service, Medicine Hat Police Service and RCMP.
Since being formed in 2006, ALERT said its teams from across the province have made nearly 11,000 arrests, seized $610 million worth of harmful drugs, and have taken 1,200 firearms out of the hands of criminals.