Violent drug trafficking network operating in Calgary and throughout Western Canada busted

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The Calgary Police announced Tuesday that nine people were arrested following an extensive, 18-month investigation into a violent drug trafficking network operating in Calgary and throughout Western Canada.

“Our investigation involved a total of four Calgary Police Service operations, as well as a joint investigation with the Saskatoon Integrated Crime Reduction Team (S-ICRT), a joint taskforce between the Saskatoon Police Service and Saskatchewan RCMP,” the Calgary Police said in a statement.

The statement further added that the Calgary Police Guns & Gangs Unit began several operations in early 2020, targeting individuals who were believed to be contributing to the rise in gun violence in the city.

Through intelligence, the Calgary Police identified several individuals believed to be working together in a sophisticated drug traffic network, the Calgary Police said, adding that investigators allege that this network had been engaged in conflict with a rival drug trafficking network in the city, and that combined, the two groups were responsible for more than 20 violent events in Calgary that spanned just over a year, including a double homicide that occurred in April 2019.

As a result of the Calgary investigations, 23 search warrants were executed on residences and vehicles in Calgary, Banff and Saskatoon between April 2020 and May 2021, with investigators seizing six firearms, including a rifle with a modified barrel and prohibited magazine and a replica Glock handgun with a 3D-printed receiver, five airsoft guns, realistic in appearance to real firearms, and more than $300,000 in Canadian currency.

The investigators also seized a BMW X5, which was equipped with a sophisticated hydraulic trapdoor that contained one of the seized firearms. Investigators also believe that the trapdoor was used to store and transport other illicit items.

More than $55,000 worth of drugs, including cocaine, methamphetamine, fentanyl pills and patches, crack cocaine, marijuana, phenacetin, benzodiazepine, and prescription pills, were also seized, together with other items, including batons, bear spray, body armour, a taser, money counters, cell phones, drug packaging and paraphernalia, and various ammunition.

“Due to the sheer number of individuals involved, we had to narrow our focus to those who put our community most at risk,” said Staff Sergeant Greg Cooper of the CPS Guns & Gangs Unit. “From start to finish, this investigation required an incredible amount of coordination and patience from our investigators, who worked tirelessly to hold these individuals accountable. Though our work is not over, these charges are significant, and a major step towards protecting Calgarians put at risk by drug trafficking and the related violence that follows.”

The following nine individuals were arrested and charged in Calgary as a result of the collaborative efforts across the investigations:

  • Amandeep SAGGU, 31, of Calgary, has been charged with five organized crime and drug offences, including instructing the commission of an offence for a criminal organization, trafficking of controlled substances, production of a controlled substance and possession of property obtained by crime. SAGGU will next appear in court on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021.
  • Ravneet GILL, 25, of Calgary, has been charged with three organized crime and drug offences, including participation in activities of a criminal organization, production of a controlled substance and possession of property obtained by crime. GILL will next appear in court on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021.
  • Prabhjyot BHATTI, 22, of Calgary, has been charged with five organized crime and drug offences, including participation in activities of a criminal organization, trafficking of controlled substances, production of a controlled substance and possession of property obtained by crime. BHATTI will next appear in court on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021.
  • Jarmanjit DATEWAS, 23, of Calgary, has been charged with five organized crime and drug offences, including participation in activities of a criminal organization, trafficking of controlled substances, production of a controlled substance and possession of property obtained by crime. DATEWAS will next appear in court on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022.
  • Jaskaran SIDHU, 22, of Calgary, was charged with 27 weapons and breach offences, including discharge a firearm with intent to endanger life, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, and possession of a weapon contrary to a prohibition order. SIDHU appeared in court on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021.
  • Jasman DHALIWAL, 19, of Calgary, was charged with ten weapons and breach offences, including possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, possession of a weapon obtained by crime and failing to comply with a sentence or disposition. DHALIWAL will next appear in court on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022.
  • Steven WHYTE, 27, of Calgary, was charged with ten drug, weapons and breach offences, including possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose and possession of a weapon contrary to a prohibition order. WHYTE will appear next in court on Monday, Feb. 28, 2022.
  • Safwan RIAZ, 22, of Calgary, was charged with four drug offences, including of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking and possession of proceeds of property obtained by crime over $5,000. RIAZ will appear next in court on Monday, Oct. 3, 2022.
  • Irkham FAROOQ, 23, of Calgary, was charged with four drug offences including possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking and possession of proceeds of property obtained by crime over $5,000. FAROOQ will next appear in court on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022.

The Calgary Police also added that additional individuals have also been charged in Saskatoon by the S-ICRT. It is believed that these individuals provided support to the Calgary network by funding them for both drugs and legal fees.

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