TORONTO, Nov. 20, 2013 /CNW/ - A joint investigation between the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) has resulted in the seizure of 70 kg of cocaine and the arrest of three Toronto area residents.
The investigation was set in motion when U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at Miami International Airport inspected a package containing a hydraulic piston that was shipped from Ecuador, on a US airline, and destined for Toronto. Through a careful examination, CBP officers found approximately 70 kg of cocaine concealed inside the hydraulic piston. CBP contacted HSI to initiate a narcotics smuggling investigation.
As the shipment was destined for Toronto, HSI Miami special agents in coordination with HSI Toronto special agents contacted the RCMP's GTA Serious and Organized Crime unit. RCMP investigators launched a local investigation to identify those responsible for attempting the delivery of the cocaine into Canada. During the investigation, the RCMP received assistance from several other Canadian law enforcement agencies.
On November 16, 2013, RCMP investigators attended to a commercial business in the area of Steinway Blvd and Goodmark Place in Toronto and arrested three men. Further investigation led the RCMP to execute multiple search warrants throughout the GTA at both commercial and residential addresses.
"Utilizing new and innovative methods, illegal drugs are smuggled into Canada and other countries regularly. These drugs negatively impact the social and economic fabric of Canada and consume law enforcement resources," said Inspector Dean Dickson, officer in charge of the RCMP's Toronto Airport Detachment. "In order to combat the illicit drug trade, concerted efforts between our domestic and international law enforcement partners are vital. This seizure and resulting arrests are tangible evidence of such cooperative efforts."
"HSI works closely with our international partners to dismantle narcotics smuggling organizations from the source countries to the points of final distribution," said Alysa D. Erichs special agent in charge of HSI Miami. "This was another successful opportunity to work with our great partners in Canada."
"CBP at Miami International Airport is committed to working with our federal and international partners to interdict narcotics transiting through the United States and to disrupt drug trafficking organizations, said CBP MIA Port Director Roland Suliveras. "This seizure is an example of the knowledge and skills of CBP Officers at MIA to interdict deeply concealed narcotics utilizing thorough examination procedures."
The RCMP has charged the following men with offences relating to the importation of a controlled substance (cocaine):
- Olanrewaju LISBOA (44) of Toronto, Ontario
- Akintoye ADEBIYI (45) of Brampton, Ontario
- Mike ODUH (49) of Toronto, Ontario
All accused individuals remain in custody and are scheduled to make appearances at Brampton Provincial Courthouse at 7755 Hurontario Street. This investigation in on-going and may result in further arrests and charges.
For photos related to this investigation, please visit the Ontario RCMP Newsroom.
The RCMP would like to thank the ICE Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), Toronto Police Service (TPS) - 31 and 23 division and Peel Regional Police (PRP) for their assistance in this investigation.
SOURCE: Royal Canadian Mounted Police
For further information:
Sgt. Richard Rollings,
RCMP Media Relations
"O" Division (Ontario)