25 Punjabi men held as int'l drug racket busted in Canada

25 Punjabi men held as int'l drug racket busted in Canada


Toronto, April 21 (IANS) An Indo-Canadian drug racket with links to the US and India has been busted with the arrest of over 30 persons. Ten kg of cocaine, 8 kg of ketamine, 3 kg of heroin, 2.5 kg of opium, 48 firearms and $730,000 in Canadian currency have been seized under the 'Operation Cheetah'. The arrests and drug seizure come after the year-long 'Operation Cheetah' culminated in raids last week, which were carried out by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the US Drug Enforcement Administration and regional police forces in Ontario, British Columbia and California, resulting in the arrest of 33 people. Twenty-five of those arrested are Punjabi men from the Indian-dominated city of Brampton on the outskirts of Toronto. They have been identified as Parshotem Malhi, 54, Rupinder Dhillion, 37, Sanveer Singh, 25, Haripal Nagra, 45, Pritpal Singh, 56, Harkiran Singh, 33, Lakhpreet Brar, 29, Balwinder Dhaliwal, 60, Sukhmanpreet Singh, 23, Khushal Bhinder, 36, Prabhjeet Mundian, 34, Vansh Arora, 24, Simranjeet Narang, 28, Gaganpreet Gill, 28, Sukjit Dhaliwal, 47, Harjot Singh, 31, and Sukhjit Dhugga, 35. Gurbinder Sooch, 41, with no fixed address, has also been arrested. These men smuggled cocaine, ketamine, heroin and opium into Canada and distributed them through their underground network. They face various criminal offences, including conspiracies to import banned substances, drug smuggling, and possession of property obtained by crime. Cocaine and other drugs smuggled into Canada come from California and are brought in by the truckers. A few months back, a Punjabi trucker named Amanpreet Sandhu from Calgary was arrested while smuggling drugs worth over $28 million - a record in Canada.

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