MONTREAL – finally the 14 suspects who were arrested and detained Monday on the sidelines of the dismantling of a major international network of money laundering that has mobilized some 300 police officers across the country. Three other suspects are still being sought.
The investigation, which has implicated several police officers as well as investigators from Revenue Canada, lasting from 2016 and had been triggered by the transmission of an information from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the United States.
The money came from criminal groups in Montreal and was passed through exchange offices of Toronto.
The network used a system of informal transfer of values with ramifications in Lebanon, the united arab Emirates, Iran, the United States and China. The funds were then returned to the exporting countries of narcotic drugs, such as Colombia and Mexico.
This process allowed to launder large sums of money derived from illegal activities, including drug trafficking.
Criminal organizations could make imports of narcotic drugs through this network.
The operation, called “Collector”, has led to the seizure of large quantities of cannabis, cocaine, hashish and methamphetamine, the value of which is estimated to be nearly $ 2.2 million. Also, the police have put their hands on $ 8.7 million in canadian currency and the foreign, and proceeded to the blocking of six properties, with a value estimated at $15 million.
A property of $ 7 million has also been seized by the RCMP as well unlawful.
The total value of the seized assets and blocked amounted to $32.8 million.
In all, 11 search warrants were conducted, four in Quebec and seven in Ontario.
Among the individuals arrested, the police have put their hands on the two alleged leaders of the network, Nader Gramian-Nik, age 56, of Vaughan, who led the “cell Ontario”, and Mohamad Jaber, age 51, of Laval, at the head of the “cell-Québec”.
The suspects are facing a host of charges ranging from conspiracy, possession of narcotics for purpose of trafficking, proceeds of crime gangsterism.
Three other people who had also been arrested were released and will face no charges.