Fairview man gets two years af­ter plead­ing guilty in mas­sive 2015 drug bust

Fort McMurray Today - - NEWS - VIN­CENT MCDER­MOTT vm­c­der­[email protected]­media.com

A Fairview man ar­rested for his in­volve­ment in a drug traf­fick­ing net­work in Fort Mcmur­ray has been sen­tenced to two years in prison.

Gary Par­tridge, 69, had al­ready pled guilty to traf­fick­ing of a con­trolled sub­stance when he was sen­tenced Wed­nes­day in an Ed­mon­ton court­room.

Ac­cord­ing to the Al­berta Law En­force­ment Re­sponse Team, Par­tridge was one of eight peo­ple ar­rested in 2015 fol­low­ing a two-year in­ves­ti­ga­tion that ended with the seizure of more than $1 mil­lion in drugs, an im­pres­sive haul of lux­ury ve­hi­cles, firearms and cash.

On June 3, 2015, Wood Buf­falo RCMP and ALERT ex­e­cuted seven search war­rants by raid­ing five homes, a ho­tel room at the Chateau Nova and the Sup­ple­ment King store in Thick­wood.

It took more than a week for po­lice to cat­a­logue their haul: 2,908 fen­tanyl pills, 198 grams of psilo­cy­bin, 26.3 kilo­grams of mar­i­juana and 7.2 kilo­grams of co­caine. Po­lice also seized $23,150 in cash, six high-end ve­hi­cles, six recre­ational ve­hi­cles and a trailer.

A shot­gun and loaded ri­fle with a pro­hib­ited mag­a­zine mod­i­fied to hold more than the le­gally al­lowed five bul­lets were also found.

Seven peo­ple were ar­rested, while Par­tridge and another man were ar­rested in the fol­low­ing weeks.

“In this par­tic­u­lar in­ves­ti­ga­tion, we pulled out all the stops to en­sure their op­er­a­tions would be elim­i­nated,” said In­spec­tor Chad Coles at the time of the ar­rests.

“When you look at fen­tanyl alone, and the num­ber of over­dose deaths it’s been tied too, it’s a very vi­o­lent drug,” said ALERT spokesper­son Mike Tucker dur­ing a 2015 in­ter­view with the To­day. “And clearly, with co­caine, a very valu­able com­mod­ity, highly ad­dic­tive, it can de­stroy lives and fam­i­lies.”

Sev­eral in­di­vid­u­als are still in court since the ar­rests.

Patrick Felix and Spencer Brown, who are al­leged to be the mas­ter­minds of the op­er­a­tion, are sched­uled to make their next ap­pear­ance in Ed­mon­ton’s Court of Queen’s Bench on Dec. 19.

A trial was al­ready held for Ja­son Mul­ley and a de­ci­sion is ex­pected to be sched­uled for some­time in Jan­uary.

Other peo­ple con­nected to the case have al­ready been sen­tenced.

Paul Oh­elo was sen­tenced to five-and-a-half years on traf­fick­ing charges in July 2017 af­ter plead­ing guilty.

Alexan­der Jurich was found guilty of drug traf­fick­ing charges and sen­tenced to five years im­pris­on­ment in April 2016.

A traf­fick­ing charge was with­drawn, as was the charge of con­spir­ing to com­mit an in­dictable of­fense and five firearm charges.

Mandy Gau­vreau pleaded guilty to traf­fick­ing a con­trolled sub­stance in April 2016. Six traf­fick­ing charges were with­drawn, as was the charge of con­spir­ing to com­mit an in­dictable of­fense.

She was sen­tenced the fol­low­ing June to three-and-a-half years im­pris­on­ment, but has since been re­leased.

All charges against Rachel Jurich were with­drawn.

VIN­CENT MCDER­MOTT/FORT MCMUR­RAY TO­DAY/POST­MEDIA NET­WORK

In­spec­tor Chad Coles of the Al­berta Law En­force­ment Re­sponse Team poses with a bag of co­caine out­side Wood Buf­falo RCMP head­quar­ters on Tues­day, June 9, 2015. ALERT held a press con­fer­ence at the build­ing af­ter seiz­ing more than $1 mil­lion worth of drugs fol­low­ing a two-year in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

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