A bust by Alberta’s organized crime investigation unit resulted in the seizure of more than half a million dollars-worth of drugs, plus vehicles and cash from properties in Edmonton and central Alberta.
The vehicles and cash were seized as offence-related property and will be considered for civil forfeiture, ALERT said. One of the vehicles was a 2021 Cadillac Escalade, which the agency said was worth an estimated $130,000.
The drugs and other illegal items seized have an estimated street value in excess of $500,000 and include:
- 3,882 grams of cocaine
- 14,730 grams of a cocaine buffing agent
- 1,011 grams of methamphetamine
- 2,022 grams of cannabis
- 51 grams of fentanyl
- 28 cases of contraband tobacco products
- Three vehicles
- $55,032 cash
- One shotgun
- 10 prohibited handgun converter switches, which ALERT said are used to transform Glock handguns into a prohibited firearm
ALERT’s investigation began in November 2021, a result of an RCMP investigation into a Grande Prairie-based drug trafficking network.
“ALERT is always looking to expand the scope of investigations and move up the food chain,” said ALERT Edmonton acting Insp. Blayne Eliuk.
“We rely on criminal intelligence from our partner agencies to collaboratively dismantle these types of multi-jurisdictional drug networks.”
John McKee, a 39-year-old man from Edmonton, is charged with drug trafficking, possessing drugs for the purpose of trafficking, possessing property obtained by crime, and possessing a prohibited device.
Nathan Newman, a 28-year-old man from Wainwright, is charged with drug trafficking, possessing drugs for the purpose of trafficking, possessing property obtained by crime, possessing a prohibited device, careless use of a firearm, and tobacco distribution.
Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police or submit an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or online.
ALERT is a multi-police agency funded by the Alberta government that investigates serious and organized crime across the province.