Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Salvatore Scoppa targeted by police in murder investigation

Salvatore Scoppa, a figurehead of the Montreal mafia, is suspected of knowing much about the double murder of Daniel Pierre and Mohamed Qazi Ali, two men also linked to organized crime. The two men disappeared in Blainville on September 25 and 26, 2013. Police believe they were liquidated by the mafia.
Police now believe their bodies were cut to pieces and they will never be found, but now they know who committed the crime and who commissioned it. It is for this reason that Scoppa and his entourage have been targeted by a series of searches in recent months. The home of Scoppa was visited by investigators on January 17th.

A member of an organization that sold cocaine on behalf of the Scoppa organization decided to work for the police. The informer is alleged to have witnessed the double murder of Pierre, 45, and Qazi Ali, 30. The narco-trafficker began to panic at the end of September 2016. He had taken refuge in Mexico with his wife, fearing for his life because the organization of Scoppa was seeking revenge for the disappearance of five kilos of cocaine. (worth $ 250,000+)

Leonardo Rizzuto and Stefano Sollecito
The informer decided to call the Sûreté du Québec saying that he was ready to "sell" Scoppa, who was then working under orders of Stefano Sollecito. When the couple returned to Quebec on October 30, 2016, heavily armed police from the Sûreté du Québec were waiting for them. The informer has changed his identity and is kept by the Witness Protection Service and monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week by police. No charges have been laid against Scoppa at this time.
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Accused murderer Steven Douglas Skinner finally back in Canada

Steven Douglas Skinner, 44, was extradited to Canada from Venezuela on Saturday. An international arrest warrant was issued for Skinner in July 2011. He is facing a charge of second-degree murder in connection with the death of Stacey Adams.

Skinner was arrested by police on Margarita Island, Venezuela on May 15, 2016. In addition to a charge of second-degree murder, Skinner is also facing a slew of charges – including aggravated assault, forcible confinement and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

3 plead guilty to drug charges in Project Mastiff

José McCarthy, 40, pleaded guilty to four charges related to Project Mastiff, an investigation that produced the arrests of four dozen people in November 2015, including Salvatore Cazzetta, 62, a leader among the Hells Angels in Quebec.

François Langlois, 43, and Claude Ouellette, 43 also pled guilty to a number of counts including conspiracy charges, drug trafficking and handling the proceeds of crime. Salvatore Cazzetta faces three charges in connection with Project Mastiff. He has entered a not-guilty plea to all charges and has filed a motion seeking to have a separate trial.
McCarthy likely faces an overall prison term of 58 months less time served as a result of a joint recommendation in September.

Sentencing in murder of Mafioso Salvatore Montagna delayed AGAIN

The six men who pleaded guilty to a murder conspiracy charge more than a year ago, on March 30, 2016, and have not had a sentencing hearing since. On Monday, a Superior Court Justice was told exactly the same thing he was told by lawyers Feb. 22. Lawyers from both sides plan to present joint recommendations on sentences for all six men. The problem, repeated twice, was that Pietro Magistrale, 65, wants to have charges he faces at another courthouse transferred to Laval so they can become part of the sentence he receives. There is no explanation as to why one courthouse was unable to transfer Magistrale’s file to the Laval courthouse over the past four months.
The five other men are: Vittorio Mirarchi, 39, Calogero Milioto, 46, Steven Fracas, 32, Jack Simpson, 75, Steven D’Addario, 39. They pleaded guilty to being part of a conspiracy to kill Montagna, who was fatally shot on Nov. 24, 2011. Their sentence hearing will now, apparently, be in September. Raynald Desjardins, 63, the leader of the plot, was sentenced to an overall prison term of 14 years in December.
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HA John Lockhart charged with attempted murder of police officer

36-year-old John Lockhart's arrest began when someone on a black motorcycle shot through the back window of a passing SUV. An hour later, a Milliken police officer spotted a motorcycle that matched the description and attempted to pull it over, but the driver sped away. The officer heard what she thought was the sound of the motorcycle backfiring, but later found a bullet in the front grill of her patrol car.

Greeley officers spotted the motorcycle speeding through the city, reaching 100 mph.
Investigators used surveillance footage from nearby businesses and Lockart's Facebook page to identify him as the driver and learn he is associated with the Hell's Angels Nomads chapter based in LaSalle, which is just south of Greeley. Officers arrested Lockhart after searching his home.

He has been charged with attempted first-degree murder of a peace officer, attempted first-degree murder, two counts of vehicular eluding and illegal discharge of a firearm. He is currently held on a $1 million bond.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Five plead guilty in plot to murder Rizzuto rivals

Top row: Edrick Antoine, Léonard Faustin Étienne, Olivier Gay. Second row: Stanley Minuty, Kevin Tate.
Gaétan Gosselin was given a gift of one extra day of life because a child happened to pass his home at the exact moment cold-blooded killers were prepared to shoot him. Five men with ties to a Montreal street gang called Unit 44 were charged with the murder of Raynald Desjardins’s business partner and close friend.

One of the five, Olivier Gay, 34, also pleaded to being part of a conspiracy to murder Vincenzo Scuderi, 49, who was killed nine days after Gosselin. Scuderi was a close lieutenant of Giuseppe (Ponytail) De Vito.

Gaétan Gosselin
Smart phones seized in the investigation revealed that after the hit was called off, Gay sent a text message to Tate saying: “I scrapped it bro. There was a man with his child passing by at the same moment.”

“It was perfect. It was just the kid who fucked the ambience. We will redo it in the same way, the same place, the same location so it will work,” Tate wrote. Gosselin was killed the following night, after arriving home from a grocery store. Gay texted: “I have begun to have a taste for this.”

Hell's Angels-linked drug ring in Sudbury Busted

A multi-jurisdictional police operation shut down a drug ring in Sudbury, arresting two Hells Angels, and charging 13 others with trafficking. 'Project Stinton' netted $60,000 worth of drugs, over $25,000 in cash, two tasers and five prohibited weapons. Police also busted an after hours 'booze can' bar in Sudbury operated by the Hell's Angels.
The busts are connected to 'Project Chronic', where 90 people are in custody and police expect to arrest 35 more after conducting dozens of raids targeting the Driftwood Crips. Members of the Driftwood Crips operated a cell in Sudbury and were targeted there. Driftwood Crips were supplying a large quantity of fentanyl and cocaine to a network of dealers in the Sudbury area, including the Hells Angels.
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Sunday, June 18, 2017

1,000+ guns seized from southern Alberta store in firearms trafficking bust

Police seized the entire inventory of a gun store in Cardston, Alberta, after a five-month probe found its owners were trafficking firearms illegally. ALERT's organized crime and gang team carried out a search warrant at K & D Implements on May 29th. Dean Sommerfeldt, 58, and Todd Sommerfeldt, 31 were charged with numerous offences.
Charges include trafficking a firearm, possession of weapons for the purpose of trafficking and careless storage of a restricted weapon.
"This gun store needlessly put public safety at risk by allowing conceivably anyone to acquire guns. We would be naive to believe that this was not exploited by organized crime and the criminal element," said police. Over 1 million rounds of ammunition, 49 handguns and 972 long guns were seized, along with 270 kilograms of gun powder and 446 kilograms of Tannerite, an explosive.

Synthetic organic chemistry - Evil versus Good

Fatal doses of heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil
The world hardly needs a more efficient way to make fentanyl. The last thing the world needs is a list of analogs and the procedures to make them so strong they make fentanyl look like bubble gum. Sadly a published paper gives us both.
Replacing the hydrogen atom (red circle) in fentanyl with what is called a carbomethoxy group (blue circle), you now have carfentanil, which is 20 times more potent than fentanyl and 1000 times more than morphine. A lethal dose of fentanyl is about one milligram, so a lethal dose of carfentanil would be 50 micrograms. One poppy seed weighs about 0.3 milligrams. So a lethal dose of carfentanil would be approximately one-sixth the weight of a poppy seed.
But even carfentanil isn't even the most potent fentanyl analog out there. That 'honor' belongs to a derivative called ohmefentanyl. Two simple modifications ... the addition of one methyl group and one hydroxyl group (blue circles)— makes the molecule 6.3 times more potent than carfentanil, 126 times more than fentanyl, and 6,300 times more than morphine.

The estimated lethal dose of ohmefentanyl is 0.16 micrograms, which means that one poppy seed's worth (300 micrograms) of ohmefentanyl is enough to kill 1900 people. One ounce (28 grams, 28,000,000 micrograms) would be enough to kill 175 million people.
But organic synthesis has also been responsible for Taxol, a very important cancer drug that treats ovarian and other cancers. The natural source, the bark of the Pacific yew tree could never provide enough of the drug. But chemists figured out a way to make it. Without this important advance, a drug that has saved many thousands of lives would not be available today.

Such is the power of synthetic organic chemistry.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Guilty verdicts in major Niagara-based cocaine operation

A jury in Welland took less than four hours to find two men guilty for their roles in an international Niagara-based cocaine ring for which cocaine-filled granite boulders were imported from Mexico. Jeffrey Kompon, 46, of Welland and Vito Buffone, 53, of Caledon had pleaded not guilty in Superior Court of Justice to possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking, trafficking cocaine and conspiracy to import. The trial lasted more than three months.

Cocaine was smuggled in boulders imported from Mexico and Brazil as building materials for kitchen countertops and other uses.
The cocaine was imported into Canada at Montreal and other border points in Ontario and taken to a warehouse in Port Colborne where the drugs were extracted from the boulders. The cocaine was then transported to various locations in the Toronto area. Kompon and Buffone were among 14 people arrested when police conducted a series of early morning raids in 2014. Police seized more than $1.2 million in cocaine.
The crime ring imported more than a tonne of cocaine in less than two years. The operation included associates of the Sinaloa crime cartel in Mexico. Also seized during the raid was $250,000 worth of marijuana, $430,000 cash, $400,000 in watches and other jewelry, a handgun and two shotguns. Thirteen high-end vehicles were also seized including a Ferrari and a Porsche.

Two people who were associated with the cartel received 17-and 18-year terms behind bars, respectively. Kompon and Buffone were in the “upper echelon” in terms of their involvement in the crime ring.

WolfPack member Dustin Wadsworth dead of apparent overdose

Dustin Wadsworth, convicted last year for trafficking, died Tuesday of a suspected overdose. Wadsworth was closely associated to the WolfPack gang alliance. Hells Angel Damion Ryan and other associates have been posting their condolences on social media.

Wadsworth was arrested in October 2014 after police seized 10 ounces of cocaine. His home was searched and police found $57,000 cash, cutting agents, drug paraphernalia and ecstasy pills. At the time Wadsworth was on bail on drug charges when he and Arash Younus were caught with $250,000 worth of drugs.

Damion Ryan
Staff Sgt. Lindsey Houghton said that “it appears that Dustin Wadsworth, like many others associated to the often dangerous gang and drug world, has fallen victim to the same products that have claimed so many other lives. It doesn’t matter if you’re a long-time drug dealer, a hardened gang member, or a teenager experimenting with drugs for the first time, no one is immune to their potentially deadly effects”

Friday, June 16, 2017

Driftwood Crips targeted in Toronto Police raids

One of Toronto's older, more violent street gangs — the Driftwood Crips — has been dismantled for the second time in a decade. Toronto Police say a year-long investigation — dubbed Project Kronic — culminated Thursday in a series of pre-dawn raids across the province. More than 800 officers from 20 forces executed 77 search warrants in Kingston, London, Sudbury, Niagara Region and other locations. Officers hauled in some 120 alleged gang members and associates on more than 660 charges relating to criminal organization offences, attempted murder, kidnapping conspiracies, robbery and trafficking in firearms and drugs.
Over the last decade, a new generation of gang bangers stepped in to fill the void of the first bust. Operations expanded across the country, according to police.

“We allege the Driftwood Crips are a criminal organization comprised of a number of different cells operating throughout Ontario and Western Canada”
Driftwood Crips have been active in the gun and drug trade since the mid-1990s. In 2005, three brothers — who cops referred to as the “three generals” — sat at the helm of the Driftwood Crips.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Lubbock man faces 20 years, $1 million fine for dealing fentanyl

A Lubbock, Texas, man, Brian Landon Brown, 32, appeared before a U.S. Magistrate Judge and pleaded guilty to a federal offense stemming from his role in a fentanyl distribution conspiracy. He faces a statutory penalty of not more than twenty years in federal prison and a $1 million fine. Brown admitted that he typically sold at least 10 grams of Furanyl Fentanyl per day. On October 6, 2016, Brown sold Furanyl Fentanyl to a 26-year-old male. He died later that day. A postmortem forensic toxicology analysis revealed a lethal 1.9 ng/mL of Furanyl Fentanyl in his blood.

Furanyl Fentanyl is a controlled substance analogue that has a chemical structure substantially similar to Fentanyl

Charles Huneault - HA money man sees charges dropped

Charles Huneault, considered by the police as a money lender linked to the Hells Angels, and four other individuals were released from charges of gangsterism and tax evasion.

In addition to gangsterism and fraud against Revenue Québec, Charles Huneault and the other four were charged with conspiracy, laundering proceeds of crime and theft of more than $ 5,000.

At the time police said the fraud was at least $ 23m
The defense said a 24-month delay was due to the prosecution's lack of preparation. Lawyers argued that the trial of the accused, which had been scheduled for January 2019, would have ended 53 months and 11 days after their arrest, had it taken place.

The Jordan decision, rendered by the Supreme Court in the summer of 2016, sets the limit of proceedings at one and a half years.