Nova Scotia

RCMP accuse 6 Canadians of conspiracy to import tonne of cocaine

Nova Scotia RCMP arrested six men after an 18-month investigation and say the group conspired to import more than one tonne of Colombian cocaine into Canada.

Operation Halfpenny snags four men from Nova Scotia and two men from Ontario

RCMP say six men from Nova Scotia and Ontario planned to import one tonne of cocaine from Colombia to Canada. (CBC)

Nova Scotia RCMP arrested six men Thursday for conspiring to import a tonne of Colombian cocaine into Canada.

The arrests come after an 18-month international drug trafficking investigation called Operation Halfpenny.

It started in spring 2015 when RCMP got information that a plan to bring a large quantity of cocaine into Canada was being hatched in Cape Breton. Two incidents of cocaine possession and trafficking were also uncovered during the investigation, an RCMP release said.

The RCMP's federal serious and organized crime unit arrested four Nova Scotia men and searched residences in Arichat, West Arichat, Baddeck and Hubley. Two other men, both from Ontario, were later arrested and charged as well.

Police say they seized:

  • 25 firearms
  • Ammunition
  • Three prohibited weapons (brass knuckles)
  • A stolen vehicle
  • Hashish
  • Cash
  • Tactical equipment (night-vision equipment, communication devices)

RCMP said they disrupted the network before the tonne of cocaine entered Canada. 

"Our job is to put these traffickers out of business and today is a success because we have disrupted an entire drug trafficking ring," RCMP Staff Sgt. Mark McKinley said in the release. 

"This cocaine was destined for our streets in Nova Scotia and for provinces across Canada. The tireless efforts of many people have prevented these drugs from entering our communities."

The men, who range in age from 35 to 59, face charges of trafficking and possessing cocaine for the purpose of trafficking. They also face charges of conspiracy to import and traffic cocaine.