CBSA intercepts nearly 9 kilograms of cocaine at Toronto and Hamilton Airports

MISSISSAUGA, ON, March 4, 2013 /CNW/ - The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Hamilton Police Service today announced three seizures of suspected cocaine. The narcotics were all discovered by border services officers over the course of four days at the Toronto Pearson International Airport and the John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport.

On February 1, 2013, border services officers intercepted packages of narcotics concealed in a mail bag arriving on a flight from Jamaica.  A multiplicity of indicators was observed, which led to the officers to examine the bag.  Inside, officers found six sealed packages of suspected cocaine weighing nearly six kilograms in total.

On February 3, 2013, a male traveller arriving from Venezuela was referred for a secondary examination.  Officers noted the traveller's suitcase was unusually heavy despite having been emptied of its contents.  X-ray examination revealed inconsistencies in the body of the suitcase and an ion scan of the inside of the bag resulted positive for suspected cocaine.  Approximately three kilograms of suspected cocaine was found concealed along the body and sides of the suitcase.

The narcotics were later laboratory tested and confirmed to be cocaine.

Finally, on February 4, 2013, border services officers at the John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport examined a courier shipment declared as coffee.  Within a package of coffee beans, officers discovered a number of brown pellets containing suspected cocaine.  The pellets contained approximately 71.5 grams of suspected cocaine.

"This is an excellent example of work done in collaboration with our law enforcement partners," said Goran Vragovic, CBSA Regional Director General of the Greater Toronto Area Region. "The CBSA works diligently to ensure the free flow of legitimate people and goods, while ensuring that illegal and dangerous goods are intercepted at the border."

In 2012, CBSA officers in the Greater Toronto Area Region's airports, postal and cargo processing facilities have seized 800 kilograms of cocaine.

In 2012, the RCMP charged over 120 persons with drug related offences as a result of seizures at the Toronto Pearson International Airport.  The RCMP Toronto Airport Detachment's role is to disrupt and dismantle organized criminal groups using the airport to further criminal activities.

"Every time we are able to keep drugs off our streets, has an impact on the health and safety of Canadians," stated Inspector Dean Dickson, officer in charge of the RCMP Toronto Airport Detachment. "With our partnership with the CBSA, seizures like these are possible."

The drugs were turned over to the RCMP and the Hamilton Police Service respectively for further investigation.

If you have witnessed or are aware of an incident involving suspicious cross-border activity, please contact the CBSA Border Watch Toll-free Line at 1-888-502-9060.

SOURCE: Royal Canadian Mounted Police

For further information:

For media information

GTA Media Relations
Canada Border Services Agency
905-803-2800

RCMP Media Relations
416-992-4409

Hamilton Police Services
Cst. Debbie McGreal-Dinning
Media Relations Officer
(905)546-4901


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