16 people charged in Cape Breton drug busts
Police in Cape Breton have charged more than a dozen people with drug-related charges after a series of busts across the island.
RCMP Insp. John Ryan said Wednesday that 16 people were charged from seven different communities — four of them are native reserves.
"This operation began two months ago and focused on supply level of prescription drugs being trafficked throughout Cape Breton, and specifically throughout our First Nation communities," said Staff Sgt. Dan Morrow.
RCMP seized more than 600 prescription pills — including hydromorphone, morphine and oxycodone — as well as cocaine and marijuana.
Insp. John Ryan said this wasn't a case of one organized drug ring.
"It's a number of different groups but they were all involved, supplying prescription pills and other illegal drugs to the various communities," Ryan told reporters at a news conference on Wednesday.
Morrow, who works out of the Eskasoni detachment of the RCMP, said many of the drugs were likely destined for native reserves.
He credited people in the community with helping to root out the dealers.
"We find that people are now more willing to call us with the intelligence that is so vital for these types of investigations," said Morrow.
"Without the key intelligence, a lot of things that we start would never get off the ground."
Fran Young, an elementary school teacher and member of Parents Against Drugs, said the message is clear that people want drugs out of their communities.
"Our people don't want the drugs here. We want to get rid of them," she told CBC News.
"We want to say no more drugs. We don't want selling drugs and we don't want to lose any more kids to drugs."