Two million greenback drug bust in Edmonton

Press release from ALERT (Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team)

Project Elk ends with eight arrests, millions of drugs, and property confiscated

A two-year cross-Canada drug trafficking investigation has been completed, with eight suspects indicted in Edmonton. ALERT seized approximately $ 2 million in drugs, cash and the proceeds of crime.

Project Elk was a lengthy investigation into an Edmonton-based drug trafficking network involved in drug imports. Eight suspects were arrested and charged in October 2021, ranging from drug and firearms-related offenses to conspiracy to commit a criminal offense to commissioning a crime for a criminal organization.

The suspects’ first court appointments are scheduled for November 25, 2021.

“The Elk Project will prove to be a major disruption to drug markets in Edmonton and other communities in northern Alberta. The negative effects of drug trafficking are varied and related to societal harm such as gang violence, theft, property crimes and health effects, ”said Inspector Kevin Berge, ALERT Edmonton.

The ALERT Edmonton organized crime team led the investigation in November 2019, and Project Elk also included assistance from the Edmonton Police Service and specialized RCMP units from Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario.

In August 2020, ALERT intercepted a six-pound shipment of cocaine that came from Toronto. The seizure sparked a series of search warrants, including six houses in Edmonton and one in Strathcona County.

Project Elk resulted in the seizure of:

  • Five firearms;
  • 10 kilograms of cocaine;
  • 17 kilograms of a cocaine polish;
  • 4.7 kilograms of meth;
  • 2.9 kilograms of cannabis; and
  • $ 135,000 in cash.

In addition, ALERT confiscated approximately $ 200,000 of property related to crime, including three vehicles, jewelry, diamond rings, and Rolex watches.

“The drug trade doesn’t pay off in the end. If you don’t get shot you will end up in jail and will only hurt the people around you. It’s not the glamorous lifestyle that is fictionalized for the sake of television and film, ”said Berge.

A total of 35 criminal charges were filed against:

  • Tyshawn Walters, 29 year old man from Edmonton;
  • Kashane Walters, 34-year-old man from Edmonton;
  • Kariyawasam Kariyawasam, 39 year old man from Edmonton;
  • Mature Malcolm, 28 year old man from Edmonton;
  • Levi Collinge, a 39-year-old man from Edmonton;
  • Boris Derpich, 43 year old man from Edmonton;
  • Stacey Sharpe, 35 year old female from Edmonton; and
  • Trevor Bellow, 31-year-old man from Edmonton.

Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call the local police force or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers is always anonymous.

Founded and funded by the Alberta government, ALERT is a compilation of the province’s most advanced law enforcement resources dedicated to fighting serious and organized crime.

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