Hells Angel and several others allegedly involved in B.C. trafficking ring

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A full-patch Hells Angel and a number of other others throughout B.C. are alleged to have been concerned in a large-scale illicit drug operation that earned them a whole bunch of hundreds of {dollars}.

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And now the B.C. authorities needs greater than $460,000 seized final 12 months by the Mixed Forces Particular Enforcement Unit forfeited as proceeds of crime, together with a Chrysler 300C and a Rolex.

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Neither Courtenay James Lafreniere, of the Angels’ Haney chapter, nor any of the opposite eight defendants named within the current civil forfeiture lawsuit have been criminally charged within the present investigation.

All are denying the federal government’s allegations of their responses filed this month in B.C. Supreme Courtroom.

CFSEU Sgt. Brenda Winpenny mentioned Monday that the anti-gang company has submitted its report back to the Public Prosecution Service of Canada to resolve whether or not prices might be laid within the investigation.

“The CFSEU investigation has concluded. The disclosure bundle has been submitted to Crown counsel, and we’re awaiting their evaluate in help of laying any prison prices,” Winpenny mentioned.

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In line with the director of civil forfeiture, Lafreniere, Jonathan Lutar and a now-deceased man named David Oppenheim operated a prison group and labored with others to facilitate their illicit drug ring.

From September 2020 to July 5, 2021, the trio “carried out a number of conferences indicative of drug trafficking” with the defendants Oakley Charest, of Vernon; Courtney Bemister-Burns, of Victoria; Matthew Alcaraz Shaw, of Delta; Gregory Wilson, of Maple Ridge; and Vancouver residents Denny Savicic and Allan Arcangel.

The group used a high-rise Yaletown condominium on Pacific Road as a stash home the place a variety of illicit medication had been seized, the federal government lawsuit mentioned.

Oppenheim, who died in February 2022, and Bemister-Burns had been noticed assembly in March 2021 for what gave the impression to be a drug transaction. When Bemister-Burns was arrested afterward, police “situated 11 bundles of Canadian foreign money totaling $53,660, a portion of the cash, 251.07 grams of cocaine and a cellphone.”

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4 months later, on July 5, a number of arrests had been made and search warrants executed, the assertion of declare mentioned.

In Charest’s 2005 Chrysler 300C, police discovered 56 grams of carfentanil combined with caffeine, 252 grams of cocaine, 213 grams of cocaine and phenacetin, in addition to a billy membership, bear spray and an iPhone.

In Oppenheim’s car, they discovered a field wrapped with Christmas paper containing 10 bundles of Canadian foreign money totalling $41,895.

At Charest’s Vernon home, police discovered one other $19,555, in addition to extra cocaine, psilocybin, dimethyltryptamine — a hallucinogenic drug often known as DMT — and phenacetin, a chopping agent.

In addition they discovered a prohibited handgun “confirmed to be stolen,” a prohibited journal and ammunition, plus brass knuckles, a weigh scale and two extra cellphones.

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At Lafreniere’s Maple Ridge house, police discovered $65,570. A few of it was bundled with elastic bands. There was additionally benzocaine, cocaine and a pair of.4 kilograms of hashish.

Police additionally seized “a black leather-based Hells Angels’ vest,” a prohibited taser prod, extra brass knuckles, and a “56-pound tank of nitrous oxide.”

The director of civil forfeiture mentioned the biker additionally had data of drug transactions often known as rating sheets, displaying gross sales, collections and money owed.

Greater than half the seized money — $234,141 — was present in Lutar’s Olympic Village suite, in addition to the Rolex, extra cocaine drug packaging materials, and a cash counting machine.

At Shaw’s home, officers discovered $24,970, rating sheets, six cellphones, and keys to the stash home.

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Lafreniere, Lutar, Shaw and Arcangel filed a joint assertion of defence on Sept. 16, denying that any of the money or the Rolex got here from unlawful actions. And Lafreniere and Lutar denied they had been members of a prison group.

Wilson filed his response Sept. 14, claiming CFSEU officers violated his Constitution rights after they searched his Maple Ridge house final 12 months. He denied they discovered any cocaine within the suite regardless of an allegation that greater than 4 kilograms was seized. The $5,800 discovered was not associated to prison exercise however was professional revenue, he mentioned.

The lawsuit was the second in 5 years by the B.C. authorities company naming Lutar as a defendant. He was additionally focused in a 2017 Vancouver Police investigation wherein officers discovered virtually $300,000 within the Marinaside Crescent condominium the place he was dwelling on the time. In 2019, a court docket ordered all however $15,000 of the seized money forfeited to the federal government.

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