North Van RCMP seize drugs after hoax kidnapping call
North Vancouver RCMP believe someone lied by calling an armed kidnapping at a drug-filled warehouse on Halloween.
The call came in around 1 p.m. Tuesday, according to Const. Mansour Sahak.
“This person obviously had some knowledge of what was going on in that warehouse and decided to phone that in. There was a brief description, but what was given to us was that there had been someone who had been held at gunpoint and kidnapped and they were in that warehouse,” he explained Thursday.
“Officers responded immediately to contain the warehouse in question. Two vehicles were apprehended and their occupants were safe as they left the building.
Sahak says the investigation “has so far yielded absolutely nothing to indicate that a kidnapping actually occurred.”
He added, “Police believe the kidnapping allegations are a false flag aimed at targeting a drug smuggling warehouse.”
In total, he noted that four people were detained. The people in the first car were arrested by Mounties on the Ironworkers Bridge, while the occupants of the second car were arrested in Vancouver with the assistance of VPD.
While the kidnapping call appeared to be a hoax, the warehouse surrounding Richmond Avenue and Mountain Highway contained an estimated $500,000 worth of real illegal drugs.
“Several search warrants were executed resulting in the seizure of a large amount of drugs and cash. The warehouse appears to have been the site of a drug trafficking laboratory, where drugs were stored, prepared and packaged for shipment and street sales.”
The seized drugs included a range of illicit substances, including magic mushrooms.
“The seized items were eight kilograms of dried cannabis, five kilograms of raw mushrooms, and 500 cans of mushrooms,” Sahak explained, adding that pills, gum, and more were also found.
Investigators say it appears the majority of the product found was being prepared for shipment to “individual customers across Canada.”
Sahak points out that none of the drugs, even those “professionally” packaged, have been approved by Health Canada.
He adds that it is unclear whether this operation is linked to other similar investigations in the region.
So far, two people have been arrested on charges of possession for the purpose of trafficking. The other two people have not been charged, although Sahak says that may change as the investigation progresses.