RCMP have just released details on a lengthy drug investigation in the Cowichan Valley.
In a release, RCMP said they began an investigation in February targeting drug traffickers operating throughout the region.
On June 30, three search warrants were produced simultaneously to search three separate residences in Crofton and Chemainus.
Two of the properties were located in the 1500 and 1700 block of Chaplain Street in Crofton and the other was in the 2800 block of Hillside Street in Chemainus.
According to North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP, the Island’s Emergency Response Team was utilized “to ensure the safety of the public, police, and suspects as drug traffickers often use firearms, weapons, and surveillance equipment to protect their illegal activities.”
In total, police seized the following from the three houses:
- Over two pounds of crystal meth
- A pound and a half of fentanyl
- Eight firearms including long guns, hand guns, and a loaded shotgun
- Counterfeit currency
- Cash, packaging, and other items used in the drug trade.
A total of four men, as young as 22 and as old as 43, were arrested.
23-year-old Taygen Mitchell Butler, 22-year-old James Otis Downey, 41-year-old Christopher Lee Hamilton, and 43-year-old Timothy James Greer have been charged with trafficking and possession for the purpose of trafficking under the Controlled Drug and Substance Act.
Staff seargent Chris Swain said “the RCMP recognizes the impact fentanyl has had on the Cowichan Valley and the number of overdoses and deaths it has caused. As part of our commitment to address the fentanyl crisis, the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP initiated this project to hold those accountable for making money off this deadly drug.”
“We believe the bulk amounts of crystal meth and fentanyl were intended for sale to other drug dealers in the area. These amounts would then be sold to local users. The amount seized represents over 15,000 individual doses of crystal meth and over 10,000 doses of fentanyl.”
Trafficking charges are expected for nine other people and firearms offences are being recommended.