Saskatchewan

Emergency plane landing leads to Sask. drug bust

A B.C. man has been arrested and charged with drug trafficking after police in Saskatchewan found an abandoned plane 50 kilometres east of Regina this summer containing suitcases full of marijuana.

A B.C. man has been arrested and charged with drug trafficking after police in Saskatchewan found an abandoned plane 50 kilometres east of Regina this summer containing suitcases full of marijuana.

The single-engine Piper Cherokee made an emergency landing on a grid road seven kilometres northeast of McLean, Sask., on July 29. At the time, RCMP reported the landing and the fact that the plane, which sustained minor damage, came to a stop in a field adjacent to the road.

On Wednesday, RCMP issued a release about the arrest, with more details about the emergency landing.

They said it was not reported to them by the two men inside the plane, who left the area. By the time investigators learned of the landing from a local farmer and arrived at the scene, no one was there.

Police also disclosed on Wednesday that their search of the aircraft uncovered three suitcases containing a total of 37 kilograms of marijuana.

RCMP in Saskatchewan worked with the RCMP detachment in Mission, B.C., for almost four months to uncover the identities of those inside the plane, which was registered to a man from Penticton, B.C.

Police said their investigation led them to believe that a 27-year-old man from West Kelowna, B.C., was a passenger in the plane.

The man was arrested in Mission on Nov. 19 and transported to Regina.

He will appear in provincial court Wednesday on charges of possession for the purpose of trafficking and breaching probation.