|RCMP press release|
The Rocky Mountain Integrated Border Enforcement Team (IBET) recently completed a 15 month cross border investigation which has resulted in multiple charges being laid against 3 individuals in Canada. Two significant cocaine seizures - one at Coutts on March 22, 2012, where Canada Border Services Agents seized 6 kilograms of cocaine, and one at Great Falls, Montana on July 27th, 2011, where 10 kilos of cocaine was seized - were a direct result of this investigation.
31 year old Abram Klassen of Taber, Alberta, 35 year old Jacob Dyck of Coaldale, and 33 year old Isaak Banman of Chihuahua, Mexico, are all charged with Importing Cocaine, Possessing Cocaine for the Purposes of Trafficking, and Conspiracy to Import Cocaine. Klassen and Dyck were arrested today on these charges. Banman was previously charged in London, Ontario on related charges, and is currently before the courts there. A warrant was issued for the arrest of Banman on the Alberta charges.
IBET is an integrated investigative team made up of investigators from the RCMP, Canada Border Services Agency, United States Border Patrol, US Homeland Security Investigations, as well as United States Customs and Border Protection. This particular investigation also included two invited participants: Taber Police Service, and the DEA.
Specially designated Canadian and United States Law Enforcement officers, working together on integrated teams, are authorized to enforce the law on both sides of the border. This cooperation was key to the success of this investigation, and resulted in 16 kilograms of cocaine being seized, and prevented more from being imported into Canada. This cocaine was in its purest form directly from Mexico and has ties to organized crime in Mexico. Investigators jointly worked this investigation from the US / Mexico Border, through the United States, and into Canada.
RCMP S/Sgt. in charge of the investigation, Gord Sage said "The success of this project is directly linked to the cooperation of the involved agencies. It clearly demonstrates how working together can protect the safety of citizens on both sides of the Canada/US border. A secure and efficient border is vital to our economy, our sovereignty, and to the safety and security of our citizens."
The investigation is continuing, and anyone with any information about this, or any other crime, is encouraged to contact the police in his/her area, or call Crime Stoppers at 1800-222-TIPS.