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Local RCMP jail Squamish’s ‘most notorious’ fentanyl dealer

Another police case brought the FBI to town
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As a wave of opioid deaths sweeps the province, Squamish RCMP said they took down the town’s “most notorious” fentanyl dealer.

“Our team, led by Sgt. [Jeff] Shore, did two search warrants on our most notorious fentanyl dealer here in Squamish,” said Insp. Kara Triance, the officer in charge of the Sea to Sky detachment. “The dealer is now in jail, incarcerated. Unfortunately, another low-level drug dealer has moved into that residence.”

According to figures provided by police, the number of drug trafficking crimes in Squamish decreased by about 36 per cent. In 2018, there were seven cases recorded, down from the 11 in 2017.

Triance chronicled other highlights of the past few months during the RCMP’s regular update to council at municipal hall on Jan. 29.

This presentation also takes place as council is in the midst of budget talks. Since the municipality foots much of the bill for the local RCMP detachment, officers are typically keen to trumpet their successes at this time of year.

Another case of note involved the FBI.

Triance said that thanks to their intelligence-sharing system, a sharp-eyed officer was able to spot and pull over a vehicle associated with a Lower Mainland fraud ring as it drove through town.

The suspect had a machine that was churning out $100 U.S. bills, which prompted the FBI to get involved and lend a hand with the case.

“You’ll see an increase in those counterfeit currencies as a result of this particular offender, but he was taken off the road here in Squamish,” said Triance.

The number of local counterfeit currency cases jumped up by 41 per cent, according to RCMP statistics. In 2018, that number was 12. The previous year it was seven.

One other statistic of note shows a 56 per cent increase in sexual offences. There were 36 in 2018, up from 23 in 2017.

Triance said this doesn’t necessarily mean there were more offences, but could indicate people are more willing to report the crime.

For instance, the "Me Too" Movement has created a cultural shift worldwide, and, locally, a new third-party reporting system is being piloted at Howe Sound Women’s Centre, she said.

Women unwilling to identify themselves can now report anonymously at the centre, which will provide information to officers.