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Drugs, firearms seized in investigation involving police in Toronto, Ottawa
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Monday, February 18, 2019 11:29AM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 18, 2019 4:19PM EST
One man is in custody and two suspects are wanted in connection with a drug trafficking and firearms investigation involving police in Toronto and Ottawa.
Insp. Steve Watts provided details about the investigation, dubbed “Project Moses,” at a news conference at Toronto police headquarters on Monday morning.
The Toronto Police Service's drug squad said an investigation was launched into a "high-level" drug dealer in October 2018.
Police said they later learned of an "intricate drug trafficking network" operating in the GTA and Ottawa.
Following an "extensive investigation," police executed multiple search warrants in Toronto last week, resulting in the seizure of a significant amount of drugs and weapons, including one assault rifle, six handguns, and 1,000 rounds of ammunition.
Police said they seized more than two kilograms of powdered cocaine, one kilogram of Fentanyl, half a kilogram of heroin and two kilograms of marijuana.
About $60,000 in cash was also seized by police.
In total, Watts said the drugs seized in the investigation would have an estimated street value of $700,000.
The search warrants were carried out at residences across Toronto as well as storage lockers and vehicles. The vehicles, Watts said, contained “traps” to conceal narcotics and weapons. "Trap" furniture was also used to transport drugs and guns, Watts said.
Three suspects have been identified in the investigation but only one man, Nicholas Ortega, 42, has been apprehended.
Canada-wide warrants have been issued for the outstanding suspects, identified by police as Vincent Huang, 34, and Daniel Siu, 33.
Watts said all three men, who did not possess licences to carry firearms, are facing more than 25 weapons charges combined.
They will also be charged with a number of drug trafficking-related offences.
“They operate in organized crime groups. They operate in cells” Watts said. “To lose this much product and to lose this many firearms is very significant.”