Seven Ucluelet residents have been charged with drug and weapons offences following a year-long joint operation between the Ucluelet RCMP and Vancouver Island RCMP General Investigation section (GIS).
The operation targeted the opioid drug trade in the area with the intent to limit the effects of the crisis in the community, reads an Oct. 8 RCMP news release.
• Dylan Bower (trafficking in controlled substance; possession for the purpose of trafficking and firearms offences)
• David Cameron (trafficking in controlled substance)
• Reginald David (trafficking in controlled substance)
• John Trethewey (trafficking in controlled substance; possession for the purpose of trafficking)
• Gillian Pratt (trafficking in controlled substance)
• Sheldon Bower (possession for the purpose of trafficking and firearms related offences)
• Angelena Duarto (possession for the purpose of trafficking and firearms related offences)
The operation began in September 2019 when two search warrants were executed in Ucluelet; drugs, firearms, drug paraphernalia and a vehicle were seized, according to the RCMP. Police said the seized drugs were later sent off for analysis and the drugs being sold and distributed as heroin were confirmed to be fentanyl. Other drugs seized included cocaine, heroin and oxycodone. Also seized was a significant amount of currency, four firearms and a vehicle.
With the ongoing worldwide coronavirus pandemic delaying court proceedings, charge approval timelines were extended. In early September 2020, various charges including trafficking and weapons charges were approved against seven adults from Ucluelet.
When executing arrest warrants on Sept. 22, 2020, Ucluelet RCMP and Island District GIS officers made further seizures and additional charges are being recommended for two of the suspects.
All individuals are Ucluelet residents and will appear in court at a future date.
“This co-operative partnership between all agencies shows the required hard work that is required for these extensive and multi-layered investigations to be a success,” said Corp. Chris Manseau, BC RCMP media relations officer.