TORONTO, Sept. 24 /CNW/ - The Niagara Regional Police Service commenced
an undercover operation after an investigation identified a non-traditional
organized crime group was operating in the Niagara Region and elsewhere in the
Members of this group who were previously associated to persons charged
in 'Project Bulldog' established a multi-kilogram level drug trafficking
network to fill the void left by the disruption of the group in 'Project
'Bulldog' in 2005.
The Niagara Regional Police and members of the Golden Horseshoe Combined
Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) consisting of members from the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Niagara Regional Police Service, Hamilton
Police Service, Halton Regional Police Service and Canada Border Services
Agency (CBSA), commenced Project O-Mercury in January 2008.
The project was an ongoing investigation into the activities of Dwayne
Forde and associates, trafficking in multiple kilograms of cocaine. This drug
trafficking operation primarily took place in the Regional Municipality of
Niagara. The purpose of this project was to gather evidence in support of
charges for importation, trafficking, and proceeds of crime, as well as
identifying linkages to other criminal organizations.
The project commenced as an investigation into the street level
distribution of cocaine. Investigators systematically identified persons in
the criminal organization responsible for the importation and trafficking of
multi-kilograms of cocaine as well as the exportation and trafficking of
marihuana at the multi-kilogram level.
Investigators executed eleven search warrants and effected arrests on 20
adult persons. Those accused face numerous charges, some of which include:
Participating in a Criminal Organization, Proceeds of Crime, Conspiracy to
Traffic in a Controlled Substance (Cocaine and Marihuana), Possession for the
Purpose of Trafficking (Cocaine and Marihuana), Production of a Controlled
Substance (Marihuana), Unlawful Possession of an Explosive, Unauthorized
Possession of a Prohibited Firearm and Unauthorized Possession of a Non
Investigators seized 5 kilograms of cocaine, seventy-eight lbs. of
marijuana, 120 marihuana plants, seven illegal firearms including two
semi-automatics pistols and two semi-automatic shotguns. Four other prohibited
weapons and over $830,000 in cash.
Fifteen motor vehicles were restrained/seized as offence related property
and proceeds of crime.
The investigation is still ongoing and further charges and seizures are
20 individuals have been charged and five subjects are still outstanding.
Over 75 criminal charges have been laid to date.
Persons charged in this project:
Pha Nguyen, 30 years of age, Niagara Falls
Wayne Henry, 40 years of age, St. Catharines
Winston Walker, 44 years of age, Barbados
Leonard Farinacci Jr., 27 years of age, St. Catharines
Lucas Farinacci, 28 years, St. Catharines
Leonard Farinacci Sr., 57 years of age, St. Catharines
Laura Farinacci 53 years of age, St. Catharines
Leah Farinacci, 30 years of age, St. Catharines
Gary Ball, 21 years of age, St. Catharines
Joseph Nikiczuk, 32 years of age, St. Catharines
Dwayne Forde, 37 years of age, St. Catharines
Rosanne Forde, 30 years of age, St. Catharines
Devere Hurley, 43 years of age, Thorold
Edgar Hill, 47 years of age, Thorold
Kent Akiyama, 42 years of age, Niagara Falls
Robert Dick, 44 years of age, Fonthill
Darryl Jackson, 30 years of age, Ridgeway
Jason Wilson, 26 years of age, Thorold
Gleason Dickensen, 24 years of age, Thorold
William J. Francis, 29 years of age, Thorold
For further information:
For further information: Media Contacts: Jacquie Forgeron, Niagara
Regional Police, Public Affairs Officer, (905) 688-4111 ext. 5010; Marc
LaPorte, RCMP "O" Division, Media Relations Coordinator, (519) 640-7302