CORNWALL, ON, Oct. 30, 2012 /CNW/ - On the evening of September 29th, 2012, while conducting anti-smuggling surveillance in South Stormont, Cornwall Regional Task Force (CRTF) members observed a black van leaving a storage unit in a known smuggling area. The van was stopped by police as it left the unit. The driver, Jacques BEAULIEU (age 72) of Cornwall, was arrested as one case of contraband tobacco was found in his van. Further investigation also resulted in the arrest of a co-accused, Doreen DELORMIER (age 61) of Akwesasne, ON. A search of the storage unit later yielded another 18 cases of cigarettes. The offenders' vehicles, a 2012 Chevrolet Avalanche and a 2011 Dodge Caravan were seized as conveyances.
On the evening of October 1st, 2012, CRTF patrols observed a smuggling vessel approaching the shore in South Glengarry. The CRTF members approached the shoreline on foot and noticed a van waiting in the pickup location. A suspect wearing a black balaclava ran to the van, started it and fled, driving dangerously close to a CRTF member in the process. The driver later fled from a police traffic stop and crashed into a ditch. The suspect escaped on foot before police arrived on scene. Subsequent search of the area failed to locate the offender. Four (4) cases of contraband cigarettes were found in the vehicle and other eight (8) were found near the shoreline.
On October 3rd, 2012, CRTF members were called to Cornwall's Port of Entry (POE), where CBSA members had arrested Jenna TIMMONS (age 20), from Fort Covington, NY, for possession of unstamped tobacco products. A search of TIMMONS' vehicle resulted in approximately seven (7) cases of contraband cigarettes being seized. She was turned over to CRTF members for processing and charged for being in possession of contraband cigarettes.
On October 7th, 2012, O.P.P. members discovered an abandoned vehicle stuck in a ditch near Williamstown. The engine was still running and the driver had left the scene. 50 cases of contraband cigarettes were left in the vehicle. The CRTF was contacted and the cigarettes were seized.
On the morning of October 11th, 2012, while conducting surveillance, CRTF members observed a three males unloading contraband tobacco from a vehicle into a garage at a residence. The males were later identified as Charles HANNAN (age 58) from South Stormont, Frankie DELORMIER (age 59) from Akwesasne, and David COOK (age 26) from Akwesasne. They were arrested for possession of unstamped tobacco. A subsequent search of the nearby outbuilding and surrounding area yielded 40 cases of contraband cigarettes, numerous jars containing marihuana bud weighing approximately 855 grams, 6 marihuana plants, and a .22 caliber rifle with ammunition. The 2006 Ford F-150 used to transport the contraband cigarettes was also seized.
On October 12th, 2012, around midnight, CRTF members were conducting surveillance in South Glengarry when they observed two males loading contraband tobacco into a black 2013 Dodge Avenger from a storage unit along the river. Upon their arrest, a third male exited the storage unit and was also apprehended. The accused were identified as Yann TRUDEL-CORBEL (age 20) from Bainsville, ON, Maxime MONCHAMP (age 21) from Bedford, QC, and Olivier GOMEAU (age 19) from Farnham, QC. In this incident, 53 cases of contraband tobacco was seized.
In the early evening hours of October 15th, 2012, CRTF members were again called to the Cornwall POE. CBSA officers had arrested Terri BUSH (age 39) from Akwesasne, Ontario, for attempting to bring approximately 5 cases of contraband tobacco through the border crossing. The tobacco was seized by the CRTF.
On the afternoon of October 16th, 2012, acting on information received, CRTF members conducted surveillance at a Morrisburg, Ontario residence. Surveillance and subsequent traffic stop resulted in the arrest of an adult female from the Morrisburg, Ontario area. A search was then conducted at the noted residence yielding approximately two (2) cases of contraband tobacco. In addition to the contraband seized, the CRTF seized a 2012 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck. The individual in this matter faces charges under the provincial Tobacco Tax Act for being in possession of unmarked cigarettes.
On the afternoon of October 20th, 2012, while conducting surveillance, CRTF members noted a suspicious vehicle heading eastbound on Hwy. 401 from Brookdale Avenue. The vehicle was later stopped in the Bainsville, Ontario area. Investigation revealed that the driver, Jordan LAZARE (age 21) from Kahnawake, PQ, had in his possession twelve (12) cases of contraband cigarettes. LAZARE was arrested, processed and later released to appear in court at a later date. In addition to the contraband, LAZARE's vehicle was seized.
The individuals noted above, who have been charged under the provisions of the Excise Act, 2001, also face charges under the provincial Tobacco Tax Act for possession of unmarked cigarettes.
If you have any information regarding criminal activity in your area, you can contact the CRTF at 1-613-937-2800 or call Crime stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
The CRTF is a joint forces partnership that includes the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Canada Border Services Agency, Ontario Provincial Police, Cornwall Community Police Service and the Ontario Ministry of Finance.
SOURCE: Cornwall Regional Task Force
For further information:
Sgt. Lee Côté
Sgt. Kristine Rae
Ontario Provincial Police