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$13M in drugs seized, 9 arrested in southern Ontario trafficking bust: OPP

The drugs seized on Jan. 21 in Toronto have a potential street value of over $13 million, police said in a news release on Wednesday.  (Ontario Provincial Police - image credit)
The drugs seized on Jan. 21 in Toronto have a potential street value of over $13 million, police said in a news release on Wednesday. (Ontario Provincial Police - image credit)

Millions of dollars worth of drugs were seized and nine people were arrested earlier this year in connection with a drug trafficking network operating out of southern Ontario, police say.

The suspects were arrested on Jan. 21 and face a combined total of 44 charges, Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) said in a news release on Wednesday.

Police searched 11 residences, four vehicles and a storage locker that day, all in Toronto, police said.

The seized drugs include suspected crystal methamphetamine, cocaine and fentanyl, police said. Evidence of drug production, such as two cocaine presses, were seized as well.

Police said the drugs "have a potential street value of more than $13 million."

The investigation began in fall 2023 when police learned of two people trafficking illicit drugs in Barrie, police said. (Ontario Provincial Police)

Two handguns, four vehicles and more than $620,000 in Canadian currency were also seized, police said.

Publication of the arrests and seizures were delayed as the police "have been dealing with a number of investigations as of late," an OPP spokesperson said in an email.

The investigation was conducted by a guns and gangs task force made up of more than a dozen police agencies and led by the OPP.

It began in fall 2023 when police learned of two people trafficking illicit drugs in Barrie, the news release said. Further investigation revealed a "sophisticated criminal network" operating out of the Greater Toronto Area, Simcoe County and Durham Region.

"Illicit drugs were being purchased from a source supplier and trafficked to a mid-level purchaser before being sold to local traffickers throughout Southern Ontario," the release said.

Police said the investigation is ongoing.