Two Toronto police officers charged in grow-op bust

BRODIE FENLON

Globe and Mail Update

July 3, 2008 at 4:07 PM EDT

TORONTO Two Toronto police officers and three corrections officers have been charged with drug-related offences in a large-scale bust of marijuana grow operations in the Greater Toronto Area.

Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair announced the charges at a press conference Thursday, hours after police executed 63 search warrants throughout GTA.

Of 23 people arrested, 20 were charged, including a young offender. The police officers, who are suspended with pay, are constables with more than eight years of experience each. They are scheduled to appear in a Newmarket court Friday.

"When we have behaviour as is alleged in this investigation, where members of our service are alleged to have been involved in a criminal enterprise, it is more than merely a betrayal of their oath of office," Chief Blair said.

"It is, frankly, a betrayal of all of the hard-working and decent men and women of the Toronto Police Service and the policing profession in this country."

Chief Blair said an internal professional standards investigation was launched after one of his officers was identified as having a connection to a residence that was under investigation for marijuana offences by the York Regional Police Service.

Internal affairs investigators conducted surveillance, interviews and search warrants over several months.

"Over the course of this investigation, the professional standards branch discovered that a second member of our service, along with three corrections officers and a number of private citizens, were involved in a criminal enterprise, the primary purpose of which was the production and distribution of marijuana, the distribution of other drugs, and the laundering of the proceeds of their criminal enterprise," Chief Blair said.

More to come

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Commentary by the Ottawa Mens Centre; (not published - read below)

 

NOTE: The Globe and Mail CLOSED this news item to comments. No doubt they did not want to piss off the Toronto Police. That is an indicator of the power of the Toronto Police and their propensity to abuse it.