Busted Mountie was headed for PM's guard

Mountie was headed to Ottawa to be part of PM's security guard until he was charged with selling drugs.

A six-year member of the RCMP who thought he was headed to an elite unit in Ottawa is instead staying in Halifax to face charges he sold drugs.

Const. Joseph Daniel Ryan, 31, a star performer with the 40-member RCMP detachment outside Halifax, was being transferred to the elite unit in Ottawa that provides bodyguards to the prime minister.

But last Thursday, he was arraigned in court in Halifax on one charge of selling marijuana.

"When these allegations surfaced, we acted on them quickly," said RCMP spokesman Sgt. Wayne Noonan. "He didn't know it, but the transfer was put on hold at that point, and of course as you know, it was cancelled."

Ryan's transfer to the so-called Prime Minister's Police Department was to be the next step on a rapid climb to the top. His application a year ago was quickly endorsed by senior officers.

In the past few years, Ryan has impressed the Mountie brass and generated headlines by making hundreds of drug busts ranging from million-dollar growing operations to an alleged small-time dealer working out of the Halifax landfill.

Ryan's two-member "street team" seized more than $2.13 million in drugs, cash and vehicles in 1999.

He is suspended with pay pending the outcome of the case. Ryan is free on bail until his next court appearance, set for June 4.