MONTREAL, Nov. 15, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Two Sûreté du Québec sergeants who responded to the tragic shooting at the Metropolis on election night Sept. 4 were among 31 Quebec police officers honoured today for acts of bravery and dedication to duty during the 14th annual Quebec Police Awards gala, held at the Marriott Château Champlain in Montreal. The gala, hosted by well-known Quebec humorist Pierre Légaré, was attended by more than 300 guests from the province's law enforcement, political and business communities.
The selection of winners was made by the members of the gala's Board of Governors, who praised the exceptional work of all police officers throughout the province. In all, 31 police officers received a Quebec Police Award crystal, which salutes courage, team spirit, perseverance and dedication to the community. This year's winners include:
Teamwork pays off in GRUE and Cranium operations
On May 23, 2012, the RCMP and U.S. Secret Service, jointly with the Sûreté du Québec, raided locations in the Trois-Rivières and Drummondville areas, dismantling in the process a criminal organization that had the capability to produce millions of dollars in counterfeit U.S. bank notes and to distribute them worldwide. The work by the three law enforcement agencies was part of two operations dubbed GRUE and Cranium.
Receiving Quebec Police Awards today were officers Tasha Adams, André Bacon, Guy Fortin and Yves Leblanc of the RCMP, along with Lieutenant Steve Dubé of the SQ, who was responsible for Operation GRUE, and Bernard Gravel, who received an award on behalf of all officers in the division. U.S. Secret Service agent Sima Ghasghaichi also received an honorary Quebec Police Award.
Project Chapitre closes the book on an international card fraud ring
On the morning of May 9, 2012, the RCMP, Sûreté du Québec and the Montreal Police Department executed 61 arrest warrants in the Greater Montreal and northern fringe areas for alleged involvement in a major international payment card fraud ring involving some 100,000 cards. The potential fraud was estimated at close to $100 million. For the first time in Canadian legal history, prosecutors were able to lay criminal organization charges.
The investigation, dubbed Project Chapitre, was initiated in 2008 by the Integrated Counterfeit Enforcement Team (ICET), a joint enforcement team composed of the RCMP and the SQ, working in collaboration with the SPVM and the Canadian Bankers Association. The investigation arose out of a number of complaints received from financial institutions that had observed an increase in reported cases of fraud.
Receiving awards for their work were RCMP Staff Sgt. Yves Leblanc, along with colleagues Serge Bilodeau, David Michaud and Jean-François Paquette, as well as Michele Boily, François Gaudet and Mathieu Plouffe of the Sûreté du Québec, and Jean-François Gravel of the SPVM. An honorary award was presented to Alexandre Hurtubise of the Canadian Bankers Association.
Project Celsius turns up the heat on an international drug ring
Project Celsius raids conducted at the Port of Montreal on April 18, 2012 by the RCMP resulted in the arrest of nine suspects in connection with the importation of a series of hashish shipments totalling 43.3 metric tonnes. This international police operation began in the summer of 2010 and involved the collaboration of law enforcement authorities in Pakistan, Italy, Belgium and the United States.
Receiving awards, from the RCMP, were Éric Grenon, Francis Martin and André Potvin, while Marc Moreau received an award on behalf of the entire team at the Port of Montreal. Martin Prud'homme of the Canada Border Services Agency received an honorary award to salute the work of his agency.
Metropolis club shooting officers praised for quick response
Sûreté du Québec Sergeants Stéphane Champagne and Jean-Marc Rochon immediately responded to a call about shots fired behind the Metropolis concert hall on Ste-Catherine Street in Montreal on the night of September 4, 2012. Shots fired. Those were the only details the sergeants, who were inside the packed club, had. Inside the Metropolis, newly-elected Quebec premier Pauline Marois was speaking to supporters. Champagne and Rochon ran to the rear exit and nabbed the gunman, who was carrying a powerful assault weapon. Their rapid response and being where they were needed merits worthy praise. That is why officers Champagne and Rochon are proud Quebec Police Awards recipients.
Quebec City Police officers cited for bravery in wild car chase and knife attack by bank robber
On October 3, 2011 Quebec Police Service Constable Yanick Campagna was chasing a bank robbery suspect in his cruiser during a harrowing car chase. Both vehicles came to a stop in a residential area, and Campagna attempted to apprehend the robber. During the struggle, the suspect attempted to stab Campagna with a knife. Campagna's colleague, Constable Sébastien-B Roy, fired on the suspect before he had a chance to stab Campagna. Both officers received awards today for their acts of bravery.
SQ officers pull driver out of burning car
On the night of March 21, 2012, Constables Nadine Lefebvre and Sylvain Richard of the Sûreté du Québec reached the scene of a car on fire on Highway 35 in Saint-Jean-Sur-Richelieu. The car was lying on its roof and the doors were locked. The officers smashed a window and unbuckled the female driver. Despite heavy smoke and intense flames and heat, the duo managed to pull the woman out of the car and to safety. For their heroics, the two officers are most deserving of 2012 Quebec Police Awards.
Quick action by SQ officers leads to dramatic water rescue
It was a quiet night in late September 2011 as Sûreté du Québec constables Vincent Bouchard and Marie-Christine Labonne patrolled along Lake St. Louis, west of Montreal. Immediately in front of them, the officers saw a car being driven erratically. As the constables attempted to intercept the vehicle, the driver stepped on the gas and a chase followed. Moments later, the car ended up in the lake and started to sink. Officers Bouchard and Labonne jumped into the frigid water and rescued all of the occupants. For saving lives during a dramatic rescue, Bouchard and Labonne are recipients of 2012 Quebec Police Awards.
Deux-Montagnes cops save young man from suicide
Police officers were called to a home in Deux-Montagnes by a woman, who said her 20-year-old son was suicidal and had locked himself in his bedroom with a knife. The situation was tense. The young man was growing more frantic, and when officers Martin Bouchard and Daniel Pilotte managed to get inside the bedroom, the youth poked himself in the neck with the knife and was preparing to slice his own throat. The officers didn't hesitate. They immediately grabbed the young man and his knife, thus saving his life. The quick action by the officers was recognized through the presentation of Quebec Police Awards today.
Going beyond the call of serving the public in Matapédia
She's been actively involved in her community since 1996. She's an accomplished athlete, a dedicated fundraiser and a tireless event organiser for many community groups. The years have gone by and she has not slowed down in her commitment to her community of Matapédia. Now, the police officer is turning her sideline fundraising passion to Christmas - more precisely, a Christmas CD, where she sings to raise money for community groups. Annie Lavoie of the Sûreté du Québec exemplifies the true spirit that every police officer seeks: serving the public. Her commitment to those who need help is deserving of a 2012 Quebec Police Award.
Closing the books on the 1995 Joleil Campeau cold case
There is, in the world of law enforcement, teams of investigators who work in the shadows. These officers focus their attention on cold cases, trying to connect the past to the present. One such investigator is Martin Saillant of the Laval Police Service, who helped crack the cold case involving the death of nine-year-old Joleil Campeau. The young girl was last seen alive near her home in Laval's Auteuil district on June 12, 1995. She was found dead in a swampy wooded area near her home four days after her mother reported her missing. The case went cold for several years, despite the fact that DNA samples were found at the scene. New technology and the creation of a cold case unit prompted Laval police to reopen the case in April 2005, along with the investigation into two other killings. Laval Police charged a 37-year-old suspect in late June 2011 - 16 years after the murder. For his work in bringing justice to the victim's family, Martin Saillant is awarded a 2012 Quebec Police Award.
Quebec Police Awards Board of Governors
The Quebec Police Awards gala is presided by a Board of Governors whose mandate is to examine all of the candidacies submitted, regardless of the origins of the policing organization. The Board is comprised of Pierre Cadieux, Steven Chabot, Jean-Pierre Charbonneau, Gaétan Delisle and Louise Mailhot.
A $5,000 donation to Quebec Special Olympics
Proceeds from the Quebec Police Awards gala were presented by the Quebec Provincial Police Association's benevolent fund and by the Quebec Mounted Police Members' Association to the Quebec Special Olympics organization. A $5,000 cheque was presented during the gala to a representative from the organization, which supports intellectually handicapped athletes throughout the province.
SOURCE: ASSOCIATION DES POLICIERES ET POLICIERS PROVINCIAUX DU QUEBEC
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