News Release from ALERT (Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team)
Project Elk concludes with eight arrests, millions in drugs and assets seized
A two-year cross-Canada drug trafficking investigation has concluded with eight Edmonton suspects facing charges. ALERT seized roughly $2 million in drugs, cash, and proceeds of crime.
Project Elk was a lengthy investigation into an Edmonton-based drug trafficking network that was involved in drug importation. Eight suspects were arrested and charged in October 2021 with offences ranging from drug and firearms related, to conspiracy to commit an indictable offence, to commission of an offence for a criminal organization.
The suspects are scheduled to make their initial court appearances on November 25, 2021.
“Project Elk will prove to be significant disruption to drug markets in Edmonton and other communities in northern Alberta. The negative impacts of drug trafficking are multi-faceted and connect back to societal harms such as gang-related violence, theft, property crimes, and healthcare implications,” said Inspector Kevin Berge, ALERT Edmonton.
ALERT Edmonton’s organized crime team spearheaded the investigation in November 2019, and Project Elk also involved the assistance of the Edmonton Police Service, and specialized RCMP units from Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario.
In August 2020, ALERT intercepted a six-kilogram cocaine shipment that originated in Toronto. The seizure precipitated a series of search warrant executions in which six homes in the Edmonton were searched and one home in Strathcona County.
Project Elk resulted in the seizure of:
- Five firearms;
- 10 kilograms of cocaine;
- 17 kilograms of a cocaine buffing agent;
- 4.7 kilograms of meth;
- 2.9 kilograms of cannabis; and
- $135,000 cash.
In addition, ALERT seized roughly $200,000 in offence related property, including three vehicles, jewelry, diamond rings, and Rolex watches.
“The drug trade doesn’t pay in the end. If you’re not shot, you’re ending up in jail, and you’re only hurting the people around you. It’s not the glamourous lifestyle that is fictionalized for the sake of TV and movies,” said Berge.
A total of 35 criminal charges have been laid against:
- Tyshawn Walters, 29-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Kashane Walters, 34-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Kariyawasam Kariyawasam, 39-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Tyree Malcolm, 28-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Levi Collinge, a 39-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Boris Derpich, 43-year-old man from Edmonton;
- Stacey Sharpe, 35-year-old woman from Edmonton; and
- Trevor Bellows, 31-year-old man from Edmonton.
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.
McDavid scores shootout winner as Oilers down Predators for third straight victory
EDMONTON — Connor McDavid scored the shootout winner and added a goal in regulation as the Edmonton Oilers continued their efforts to dig their way out of a recent slump with a 3-2 victory over the Nashville Predators on Thursday night.
Evan Bouchard also scored for the Oilers (21-16-2) who have now won three straight after going 2-11-2 in their previous 15 games. Edmonton goalie Mikko Koskinen stopped all three Nashville shootout attempts.
Filip Forsberg, Matt Duchene scored for the Predators (27-14-4), who lost for the first time in four games.
The Oilers tied an unfortunate franchise record by allowing the game’s first goal for the 11th straight game when Forsberg scored his 200th career goal high to the stick side past Koskinen five minutes into the opening period. It was also the 26th time in the last 30 games Edmonton has allowed the first goal of the game.
Edmonton got that back with 32 seconds to play in the first as McDavid blazed up ice and cut past defender Matt Benning before putting his 21st of the season through the legs of Nashville goalie Juuse Saros.
The Predators went ahead 2-1 seven-and-a-half minutes into the second when Duchene elected to shoot on a two-on-one, notching his 21st high to the glove side past Koskinen.
The Oilers pulled even again with five minutes to play in the middle frame as a long point shot from Bouchard hit a defender and caromed into the net.
There was no scoring in the third, with Edmonton outshooting the Preds 43-26 through regulation time.
Overtime saw Darnell Nurse hitting a post for the Oilers.
The Oilers begin a three-game road trip in Montreal on Saturday. The Predators are off until Tuesday, when they will host to the Vancouver Canucks.
Notes: The Oilers, who signed forward Evander Kane to a one-year deal earlier in the day, have also been getting some of their top players back in the lineup. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins returned from injury Tuesday, and Zach Hyman returned from COVID protocol Thursday… Still out of the lineup for Edmonton were Mike Smith (thumb) and Tyson Barrie (upper body)… Missing for Nashville were Dante Fabbro (upper body) and Eeli Tolvanen (COVID-19 protocol)… Predators 24-year-old forward Tanner Jeannot came into the game leading the NHL in rookie scoring with 13 goals and his team in hits with 141.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 27, 2022.
The Canadian Press
CP NewsAlert: Calgary police issue Amber Alert for missing two-year-old boy
Calgary police have issued an Amber Alert for a two-year-old boy.
They say Hawkin Gerald Thomas was taken from the downtown area at about 2:30 p.m. following a supervised visit with his mother, 40-year-old Tamara Jean Vanderjagt.
Police say they are concerned for the boy’s welfare.
Hawkin is described as white with blond hair and he was last wearing a red sweater, green boots and dark camouflage sweat pants.
His mother is described as white with blue eyes, bright short red hair, about five foot four inches tall, and she was wearing a black hoodie and red pants.
She was driving a brown 2017 Mitsubishi Outlander with Alberta licence plate NLY 991.
The car was last seen heading west on 9 Avenue Southeast going past Blackfoot Trail.
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