The RCMP arrested five men following the seizure of nine kilograms of cocaine, one of the larger cocaine seizures in the history of the province.
The investigation, known as Project Bowman, determined that the cocaine entered the province hidden in freight being transported by a trucking company, which was unaware of the cocaine shipment.
“Project Bowman was successful in preventing a significant amount of cocaine from reaching the streets of Newfoundland and Labrador,” says Staff Sergeant Thoms, RCMP St. John’s Federal Serious and Organized Crime. “When money is used to purchase cocaine it goes right into the hands of criminals who have little concern for the safety of our citizens. This amount of cocaine is typical with criminal groups that operate at a high level who are well established in the supply of drugs to our province.”
This seizure, according to police, has an end value worth of over $2 million.
One charge each of Trafficking in Cocaine, and Possession of Cocaine for the Purpose of Trafficking have been laid against all five of the following men, with an additional charge of Breach of Recognizance against Stephen Parsley:
- · Dimitrius Andreopoulos, 28 years old, of Toronto, Ontario
- · Herbert Lewis, 29 years old, of St. John’s, NL
- · Stephen Parsley, 32 years old, of St. John’s, NL
- · Wayne Parsley, 54 years old, of St. John’s, NL
- · William Richmond, 38 years old, of Grand Valley, Ontario
Lewis and Parsley have been released on bail, while Andreopoulos, Stephen Parsley, and William Richmond have been held pending bail hearings this week.
In addition to the cocaine, various other items related to cocaine distribution were seized, including a hydraulic press, vacuum sealers, cell phones and several thousand dollars cash. Further investigation is being carried out with a view to identifying other possible suspects.
NTV’s Leila Beaudoin is covering the story and will have more at 6 p.m. on The NTV Evening Newshour.