One of the biggest busts in Okanagan history has taken place.
Investigation by the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP led to the seizure of guns, drugs and cash shortly before 7 a.m Friday, March 3.
The Targeted Policing Unit, in collaboration with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C (CFSEU-BC), simultaneously executed four search warrants across three different communities in the Okanagan.
The search warrants were the culmination of a more than two month long drug trafficking investigation into a group believed to be supplying Vernon and other areas with various drugs, including fentanyl.
Search warrants were executed at three residences and a storage locker in the communities of Armstrong, Lake Country and West Kelowna. Residences on Belaire Drive in Armstrong, Stillwater Court in Lake Country, Majoros Road in West Kelowna and a storage locker in West Kelowna were all searched.
Police seized over 30 kilograms of suspected illicit drugs including cocaine, methamphetamine, MDMA, fentanyl, and synthetic opioid pills. Over 20 kg is believed to be fentanyl, which amounts to 200,000 street level doses.
In addition to the drugs, police also seized: five vehicles, $100,000 cash, 27 assault rifles, 18 handguns, six shotguns, body armour, a commercial pill press, commercial mixer and evidence of firearm manufacturing and assembly.
“This is by far the largest and most significant drug and gun seizure this team has completed,” said Sgt. David Evans of the Targeted Policing Unit. “The assistance of CFSEU-BC demonstrates our shared commitment in battling organized crime and through collaboration, we have the ability to effectively target criminals beyond municipal boundaries.”
Five people were arrested and later released from custody pending charge approval at the completion of the investigation. All five individuals are known to police.