Montreal

Montreal homes raided in operation tackling illegal alcohol trade in northern Quebec

The investigation, which began in June, found that individuals were buying alcohol in Montreal and transporting it to Nunavik to resell it illegally for an inflated price.

SQ says suspects purchased alcohol in Montreal and shipped it to Nunavik to be resold at higher price

In an operation dubbed "Plutonium," more than 80 officers with the SQ, Montreal Police, Laval Police and Kativik Regional Police Force took part in the raids. (Radio-Canada)

​​The Sûreté du Québec and the Kativik Regional Police Force conducted raids in Montreal Tuesday morning in an effort to dismantle a network of illegal alcohol sales and drug trafficking to northern Quebec.

The investigation, which began in June, found that individuals were buying alcohol in Montreal and transporting it to Nunavik to resell it illegally for an inflated price.

Police found that between 2016 and 2020, suspects purchased more than 39,000 bottles, mostly vodka, valued at above $900,000.
This police graphic shows the route illegal alcohol and drugs take to reach communities in northern Quebec. (SQ)

The SQ said that alcohol was resold for between eight and 12 times its retail price. Drugs were also resold for between two and 10 times their sale price.

Police said in a news release that individuals involved in the illegal market were shipping their products through the mail.

Police carried out the raids on seven homes and five vehicles in the Montreal area. No arrests have been made yet.

In an operation dubbed "Plutonium," more than 80 officers with the SQ, Montreal police, Laval police and Kativik Regional Police Force took part in the raids.

The investigation was conducted with the collaboration of Revenu Québec, the SAQ and Canada Post.

Police are asking anyone with information about this network to contact them confidentially at 1 800 659-4264.

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