$1.4 million in drugs, cash seized in Edmonton bust
Published Thursday, July 18, 2019 8:44AM MDT
Last Updated Thursday, July 18, 2019 12:37PM MDT
Over a million dollars’ worth of cocaine has been seized after an investigation by the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team.
Police executed a search warrant at an apartment in the Pembina neighbourhood on June 8 that they believed was being used to package and press cocaine.
Investigators seized over 11 kilograms of cocaine and 84 kilograms of a cocaine buffering agent called Phenacetin. Police say it’s one of the largest seizures of its kind by ALERT.
Phenacetin is used to dilute the purity of cocaine in order to maximize profits. It was banned in Canada in 1973 because of its carcinogenic and kidney-damaging properties.
In addition, 902 grams of ketamine and $15,465 in cash was also seized.
The total value of the seizure is believed to be $1.4 million.
Alert Insp. Marc Cochlin says this size of bust will be noticeable on the street in the short-term. “There is a ripple effect throughout the province. Unfortunately, due to large demand those voids get filled quite quickly.”
Mihnea Vasiu, 26, has been charged with drug possession for the purpose of trafficking, and possession of proceeds of crime.
Police say they began investigating Vasiu after they observed him meeting with targets during previous investigations.