Dozens of people are facing drug-related charges following what police call the largest single-day drug crackdown in Charlottetown’s history.
Police said Operation Clean Sweep is the culmination of four months of hard work targeting multiple, high-level drug trafficking operations.
On Thursday, members of the Charlottetown Police Crime Service raided 16 properties, seizing controlled substances such as cocaine, pharmaceutical opiates, methamphetamine and marijuana with an estimated street value of between $400,000 and $500,000.
Police also seized 11 vehicles and various weapons, including guns, knives and a machete.
A total of 40 people, mostly from P.E.I. but also three are from New Brunswick, have been charged. The accused range in age from 20 to 64 years old. Police describe six of those charged as “high-level” drug traffickers.
Charlottetown's police force was assisted by police from Summerside, Kensington, as well as the RCMP.
Charlottetown Police Chief Paul Smith said the operation has put a major dent in the city’s drug trade.
“We believe we've put a significant dent in the supply chain of some of the prolific suppliers that we have taken down. At the same time we have taken down a number of people that are involved in the trade to a certain extent, for lack of a better word, some of the underlings of some of the targets,” he said.
Smith said the raids happened without problems.
“We were able to execute this operation, execute our search warrants and the arrests with no injuries, no problems, no issues,” he said.
A few of the accused are being kept in custody. The others were released until their next court dates in a few weeks' time.
Police said there could be more arrests and more charges to come.