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Major drug bust made with Project Motor: investigation originated in Medicine Hat

Posted on 2 February 2022 by Prairie Post
Medicine Hat Police

Five people have been charged and more than $1.6 million in fentanyl and meth were seized in a joint investigation between ALERT and RCMP Federal Serious Organized Crime.

Project Motor is an 18-month investigation that spanned across Canada’s westernmost provinces. ALERT alleges the drug trafficking network had its origins in British Columbia’s lower mainland, and fanned out across Calgary, Edmonton, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, Grande Prairie, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg.

The investigation originated in Medicine Hat and came on the heels of a series of large drug busts in southeast Alberta in early 2020. ALERT was able to trace back the drug supply, and leverage criminal intelligence, in order to develop a clearer picture of the criminal organization believed to be responsible.

More than $1.6 million dollars’ worth of fentanyl, methamphetamine, and cocaine were seized, along with 11 firearms and $82,000 cash. Five members of the drug network have been charged with offences ranging from drug trafficking to conspiracy to traffic drugs to participating in a criminal organization.

The seizures took place during the course of the investigation and included homes being searched in Calgary, Edmonton, and Fort St. John, B.C. Investigators seized:

  • 11 firearms;
  • 4,998 grams of fentanyl;
  • 9,970 grams of meth;
  • 50 grams of cocaine;
  • $82,500 cash;

Analysis is being completed on the firearms and drugs seized. The fentanyl alone represents a theoretical yield of 50,000 doses, as it would be typically sold on the street-level.

Four people have been charged with a total of 37 criminal offences:

  • Matthew Edwards, 42-year-old from Calgary;
  • Kevin Hind, 27-year-old from Calgary;
  • Karnvir Sandhu, 25-year-old from Calgary; and
  • Atta Ul Waheed Sheikh, 34-year-old from Fort St. John.

A warrant has been issued for an additional suspect, who is presently believed to be somewhere in British Columbia:

  • Dillon Burgie, 40-year-old from Calgary.

Project Motor relied on the assistance of a number of police agencies and specialized units, including: Medicine Hat Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Calgary Police Service, British Columbia Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU), Vancouver Police, and RCMP Fort St. John, and RCMP specialized units in E-Division and K-Division.

Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police, or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers is always anonymous.

ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime.

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