MISSISSAUGA, ON, Feb. 20, 2014 /CNW/ - On February 3, 2014, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) seized over 1,500 carats of rough diamonds at Toronto Pearson International Airport. Helena Freida Bodner, a foreign national, is charged with attempting to smuggle rough diamonds into Canada.
The CBSA's initial examination of Bodner resulted in officers suspecting she was involved in an illegal activity. The suspicions where later confirmed when further examination revealed that she was an internal carrier of rough diamonds.
The CBSA contacted the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to further assist in the investigation.
- The CBSA charged Bodner with the following Customs Act offences: making false statements under section 153(a), unlawful possession of prohibited goods under section 155 and smuggling under section 159.
- The RCMP laid charges under sections 14(1) and 41(1) of the Export and Import of Rough Diamonds Act.
- Bodner is currently held in custody and her next court appearance is scheduled for February 21, 2014 at the Brampton Provincial Courthouse.
- The investigation into the source country of the diamonds is continuing.
"I want to congratulate all the officers involved for their investigative acumen and interagency cooperation. This seizure contributes to our ongoing efforts to combat smuggling and fight global conflict."
- Goran Vragovic, Regional Director General of CBSA, Greater Toronto Area Region
"The importation of rough diamonds is highly regulated and must be in accordance with the Kimberley Process to ensure that the trade in rough diamonds does not fund violence. The RCMP and CBSA will continue to work closely to detect and disrupt the trade in precious gems by criminal networks."
- Dean Dickson, Inspector, Officer in Charge, Toronto Airport Detachment, RCMP
SOURCE: Royal Canadian Mounted Police
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