Project Yuma nets about $1.4 M in seized drugs

Kingston Whig-Standard - - NEWS - STEPH CROSIER scrosier@post­

Po­lice have seized ap­prox­i­mately $1.4 mil­lion in drugs in a joint in­ves­ti­ga­tion fo­cus­ing on drug traf­fick­ing along High­way 401 and the Greater Toronto Area.

Drug en­force­ment units from the Kingston Po­lice and the Durham Re­gional Po­lice Ser­vice teamed up to tar­get traf­fick­ing cells in an in­ves­ti­ga­tion they dubbed Project Yuma. Po­lice said the cells were lo­cated in ar­eas of the GTA and Kingston and were in­volved in the sale and­dis­tri­bu­tion of pow­dered fen­tanyl, co­caine and crys­tal metham­phetamine.

Po­lice have seized eight kilo­grams of co­caine, 1.5 kilo­grams of crys­tal metham­phetamine, 737 grams of pow­ered fen­tanyl, 10 kilo­grams of cannabis mar­i­juana and half a kilo­gram of MDMA.

Be­yond drugs, po­lice also seized more than $750,000 in cash, three ve­hi­cles, $150,000 in prop­erty deemed pro­ceeds of crime, a C7 as­sault ri­fle and a loaded semi-au­to­matic hand­gun.

Po­lice have charged 18 peo­ple with a to­tal of 82 charges. The in­di­vi­dauls come from Kingston, Toronto, East Gwillim­bury, Wood­bridge, Mis­sis­sauga, Scar­bor­ough, In­n­is­fil, Whitby, Amher­stview and El­gin­burg.

In­di­vid­u­als charged by po­lice from Kingston are An­dreas Dris­tas, Jeff Couto and Ryan De­nee. Matt Mabey of Amher­stview and Richard Tozer of El­gin­burg have also been charged by po­lice.

Dris­tas, 31, has been charge by po­lice with traf­fick­ing and pos­ses­sion of pro­ceeds of crime over $5,000.

Po­lice have charged De­nee, 40, with two counts of pos­ses­sion of a con­trolled sub­stance.

Couto, 37, has been charged by po­lice with pos­ses­sion for the pur­pose of traf­fick­ing.

Mabey, 29, is fac­ing three charges from po­lice in­clud­ing pos­ses­sion, pos­ses­sion for the pur­pose of traf­fick­ing and pos­ses­sion of pro­ceeds of crime over $5,000.

Tozer, 37, has been charged by po­lice with pos­ses­sion for the pur­pose of traf­fick­ing and with breach­ing his con­di­tional sen­tence.

Durham and Kingston po­lice have part­nered in nu­mer­ous other in­ves­ti­ga­tions, in­clud­ing Project Nee­bing that took place in 2016. That in­ves­ti­ga­tion re­sulted in 19 ar­rests and the seizure of $3 mil­lion worth of drugs, three hand­guns and more than $300,000 in cash.

Failed theft at­tempt

A lo­cal woman has been charged by po­lice af­ter of­fi­cers re­sponded to the LCBO for a failed theft at­tempt.

Kingston Po­lice said that on Tues­day at ap­prox­i­mately 6:45 p.m., a woman en­tered the store. She se­lected a bot­tle of liquor then left with­out pay­ing. She was stopped by the store’s se­cu­rity, but she re­sisted and re­fused to co-op­er­ate.

Po­lice re­sponded and the woman was ar­rested with­out fur­ther in­ci­dent. Search­ing the woman, of­fi­cers found a flip-knife in her bra and a small quan­tity of crys­tal metham­phetamine in her purse, po­lice said.

A 29-year-old lo­cal woman has been charged by po­lice with theft, car­ry­ing a con­cealed weapon, pos­ses­sion of a con­trolled drug and breach­ing her un­der­tak­ing. She spent the night in po­lice cus­tody to at­tend bail court on Wed­nes­day.


Drugs, cash and weapons were seized by po­lice dur­ing Project Yuma.

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