After an almost two-year investigation, two Edmonton police officers are finding themselves on the other side of the law after being charged with illegally selling steroids to other officers, the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team announced Friday afternoon.
During a late afternoon press conference on Friday, Edmonton Police Chief Rod Knecht had stern words for the officers who he said chose to not follow the rules and ignored the law.
“These employees undermined community confidence and they undermined the good work of their colleagues,” he said.
Sgt. Greg Lewis, a 10-year member working as a detective in the southwest part of the city, faces three counts of trafficking in a controlled substance.
ASIRT alleged that between 2007 and 2013 Lewis trafficked stanozolol, an anabolic steroid, and between 2008 and 2009 trafficked testosterone.
Stanozolol was the steroid for which Canadian Olympic runner Ben Johnson tested positive during the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Lewis is also charged with trafficking Methyl-1-Testosterone, another anabolic steroid.
Const. Darren French, a 25-year member, who worked at the front desk of EPS headquarters downtown, is accused of trafficking stanozolol between 2007 and 2008.
Both Lewis and French were suspended without pay, arrested by ASIRT and charged under the Controlled Drug and Substances Act on Friday.
The six additional police officers have been transferred out of their positions and moved into jobs where they will have less interaction with the public said Knecht. They will be part of an EPS internal investigation.
The charges were laid after an “extensive investigation,” said ASIRT executive director Susan Hughson.
"This investigation focused on a core group of individuals," said Hughson.
"Though there is a possibility that the problem of trafficking in steroids extended beyond this group, there is no evidence to support the inference that this a systemic or pervasive problem within the Edmonton police service."
In a release, EPS said it became aware of the allegations facing the two officers in 2013 and “immediately contacted” Alberta’s director of law enforcement who passed the information along to ASIRT.
After learning about the allegations, EPS said it developed an internal protocol prohibiting the use or possession of steroids without a prescription.