(Photo contributed)
Maskwacis GIS seized guns, drugs and more while executing search warrants on Feb. 2 at three locations during a joint RCMP operation. (Photo contributed)

(Photo contributed) Maskwacis GIS seized guns, drugs and more while executing search warrants on Feb. 2 at three locations during a joint RCMP operation. (Photo contributed)

Central Alberta RCMP disrupt drug trafficking network

Maskwacis RCMP lead investigation

Firearms, cocaine, body armour and cash were seized on Wednesday during a joint RCMP investigation in the Maskwacis area.

RCMP said in late 2021, Maskwacis RCMP launched Project Mastodon to disrupt and dismantle a network trafficking drugs into Maskwacis, the City of Wetaskiwin and Wetaskiwin County.

On Wednesday, Maskwacis GIS simultaneously executed search warrants at three locations in a joint operation with the Maskwacis and Wetaskiwin RCMP general duty members, Wetaskiwin GIS, the Wetaskiwin Crime Reduction Unit and Wetaskiwin Police Dog Services.

As a result, police located and seized six long barreled rifles, one revolver, 45 grams of cocaine valued at $4,500, about $38,000 in cash, and body armour.

One of the firearms recovered was stolen from a break and enter in the Wainwright area.

A 36-year-old man from Wetaskiwin was charged with one count of possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking.

A 35-year-old man from Wetaskiwin was charged with trafficking cocaine, and possession of a thing with intent to produce of crack cocaine.

“We won’t tolerate individuals bringing illegal drugs into our community, and this seizure prevents that. Our detachment members work hard to honour the traditions and culture of the people of Maskwacis, which has been passed on by the elders,” said Maskwacis RCMP Staff Sgt. Richard McKay.

“Drug trafficking has no borders, and this is a great example of two detachments working together with the goal of making or communities safer and a better place for everyone to live.”

Both of the accused were held for bail hearings. The 36-year-old was released with conditions, and the 35-year-old was remanded into custody. Both are scheduled to appear in Wetaskiwin Provincial Court on Feb. 24.

Police said the investigation was ongoing and more charges were expected.

Anyone with information on illegal drug activity in the Maskwacis area is asked to contact Maskwacis RCMP at 780-585-4600 or their local police. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 222-8477 (TIPS), online at www.P3Tips.com or by using the “P3 Tips” app available through the Apple App or Google Play Store.



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