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Traffic Busts Point To Trans-canada's Role As Drug Corridor

LdyLunatic

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Alberta
31 Aug 2006



by Dan Ovsey, Reporter,
Cochrane RCMP confiscated a massive shipment of marijuana during a routine traffic stop on Sunday ( Aug. 27 ), leading to the arrest of two Ontario men now awaiting court proceedings.

The arrests occurred in the early morning hours just east of the Hwy 40 turnoff of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Police say 129 pounds of marijuana, prepared and ready for sale, was discovered by officers at the scene with the assistance of a police dog.

The arrest is the second of its kind in the past four months. In May, Canmore RCMP arrested a B.C. man for transporting $1.5 million worth of cocaine. He was also stopped for a traffic violation.

RCMP Sgt. Patrick Webb said the Trans-Canada continues to serve as the principle route for drug traffickers looking to move narcotics from western grow-ops to eastern Canada.

"We have done a lot interception on the highway and the reason for that -- it's not just that we're lucky -- it's because it's the quickest route from B.C. to the other parts of Canada," he said.

The officer added the seizure of prepared marijuana is much more significant, as 129 pounds of prepared marijuana would have a much greater street impact than marijuana plants that have not yet been processed.

Asked whether police would be ramping up enforcement along the highways, knowing the Trans-Canada is a major supply route, Webb said officers would not ignore other areas, but would be more thorough when investigating any stops they might make along the highway.

"The officers we have out there are aware there are drugs on the route, and so when they make a stop, whether it be a routine stop or whatever, they're always thinking about the next step," said Webb. "That's the advantage of having RCMP officers, because they're not just thinking about writing tickets."

Drug busts along the Trans-Canada Highway are becoming more frequent as Calgary continues to grow and serve as a hub for local dealers.

Sunday's arrests come on the heels of last week's court adjournment for [Name redacted], who was arrested for driving too slow in the passing lane last May near Canmore and was found with 20 kg of cocaine in his back seat. [Name redacted] is scheduled to return to court on Sept. 13.

In the meantime, [Name redacted], 54, and [Name redacted], 33, both of Ontario, are scheduled to appear in Cochrane court today ( Aug. 31 ) in relation to Sunday's seizure. They are charged with possession for the purpose of trafficking.
 

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