13 face charges after interprovincial drug bust

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Thirteen people, including seven from western Newfoundland, are facing charges of conspiracy to traffic in a controlled substance and trafficking in a controlled substance.
The charges were laid after a major interprovincial drug bust sent some of the accused to court in Corner Brook on Monday.

Thirteen people, including seven from western Newfoundland, are facing charges of conspiracy to traffic in a controlled substance and trafficking in a controlled substance.

The charges were laid after a major interprovincial drug bust sent some of the accused to court in Corner Brook on Monday.

Six of the western Newfoundlanders appeared in provincial court in Corner Brook as part of the conclusion of Operation Bandstand, a year-long investigation into a drug distribution network operating in Quebec and western Newfoundland.

The Corner Brook Royal Canadian Mounted Police/RNC Joint Forces Drug Section was assisted in the investigation by RCMP drug sections in Quebec City and Edmunston, N.B., along with the RCMP in Bay St. George and the Quebec Provincial Police.

Appearing in court in Corner Brook Monday were 56-year-old Terrence Arthur Pearce of Corner Brook, 47-year-old Rufus Genge and 43-year-old Marlene Benoit of Kippens, 61-year-old Gladys Fry and 67-year-old Garfield Elliott of Jeffreys and 38-year-old Ann Anderson of Irishtown.

All six were released following their brief court appearances late Monday afternoon, under certain conditions and after posting either sureties of between $5,000 and $10,000 or making a $500 cash deposit with the court. They are all next scheduled to appear in provincial court Oct. 23.
The seventh person from western Newfoundland, who police said is from the Corner Brook area, had yet to be apprehended by police as of Monday afternoon.

Those charged from Quebec, including five residents of St. Wenceslas, Que. and one resident of St. Helene, Que., were expected to be flown into Corner Brook for their first court appearances this afternoon.

The investigation into the sale of marijuana on the west coast of Newfoundland began in the fall of 2006 and led police to suppliers operating out of the town of St. Wenceslas, Que.

The drugs, police said, were being brought to Newfoundland by personal couriers and then sold in communities on the west coast of the island as well as the Northern Peninsula.

During the investigation, police seized a total of 115 pounds of processed marijuana, in addition to roughly 3,000 mature marijuana plants and a large amount of processing equipment.

Police said the seizures, which were taken at various points between Quebec and Newfoundland, represent an equivalent of more than 1.1 million marijuana cigarettes.

Organizations: RCMP, Corner Brook Royal Canadian Mounted Police/RNC Joint Forces Drug Section

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Corner Brook, Quebec City Helene Wenceslas, Que

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  • Rooster
    September 01, 2011 - 13:05

    What are the names of the 6 charged from Que? Why were those names not made public? Only the placenames were given from Que. Why?