Blue Line

Ottawa RCMP, CBSA and Ottawa Police foil attempt to smuggle large shipment of cocaine

December 5, 2023  By Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Dec. 5, 2023, Ottawa, Ont. – The Ottawa RCMP Transnational Serious and Organized Crime (TSOC) team, with the assistance of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Ottawa Police Service have dismantled an Ottawa-based organized crime group responsible for the importation of large shipments of cocaine into Canada.

In Aug. 2023, as a result of CBSA operations in New Brunswick (NB), CBSA Intelligence Officers identified a Canadian business suspected of using sea containers to smuggle drugs from Colombia to Canada.

In Oct. 2023, Colombian authorities provided information that they had seized 38 kilograms of cocaine being shipped from Colombia to a business in the Ottawa area. A second container was still on route to Canada going to the same business.

On Oct. 22, 2023, CBSA border services officers and Detector Dog Service in Saint John, NB, located and examined the second container. CBSA uncovered and seized 14 kilograms of cocaine during the search, and referred the investigation to the RCMP.


From there, the RCMP began tracking the container through eastern Canada while turning its focus on to the organized crime group responsible for the importation.

On Nov. 8, Ottawa RCMP TSOC, with assistance from CBSA and Ottawa Police, executed a search warrant on a property near Ottawa, used by the organized crime group to store the drugs pending further distribution. The search of the property resulted in the discovery of two prohibited firearms and a bulletproof vest.

In total, this operation prevented 52 kilograms of cocaine, with a street value between 1.4 and 1.7 million dollars, from entering Canada. Three males and one female from Ottawa have been arrested. All the accused have been held in custody. The next court date is at the Ontario Court of Justice, Dec. 15.

“This investigation is an excellent example of domestic and international law enforcement agencies working together to achieve a common goal. A very large amount of cocaine as well as firearms were taken off the street, leading to enhanced public safety and a significant loss for organized crime figures in Ottawa. Without the help of our partners, this investigation would not be the success it was,” said Inspector Islam Issa – Officer in charge, Transnational Serious and Organized Crime, RCMP Ottawa Detachment.

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