(Danville) Investigators specializing in organized crime began Saturday morning to dismantle a synthetic drug laboratory in Danville, in the Eastern Townships. The operation could last several days, but the first assessment already seems quite heavy.
According to the spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec, Stéphane Tremblay, more than $ 90,000 in cash, several firearms, several kilograms of methamphetamines and one kilogram of cocaine have already been seized.
This operation comes the day after the arrest of two men and two women in Danville, Montreal and Terrebonne.
The suspects appeared by telephone Friday and remain detained pending their next appearance Monday at the Drummondville courthouse. They would face a variety of narcotic-related charges.
“We know that these people are particularly suspected of being important players in a structured network, which produced and sold a large quantity of methamphetamines on a regular basis,” said Sergeant Stéphane Tremblay in an interview.
It has not been specified to which criminal organization these suspects would be linked.
The laboratory in question is one of the six places raided by the police as part of an investigation initiated in the fall of 2019, including the homes of the suspects. The investigation mobilizes around fifty police officers in all, including twenty only in Danville, Saturday morning. The assessment of what was seized on the spot should follow later.
Sergeant Stéphane Tremblay explained that dismantling a synthetic drug laboratory, especially one of this magnitude, is generally a delicate operation.
“Laboratories often use chemicals and solvents that are volatile. There is a high risk of fire, even explosion in some cases, ”he acknowledged.
Drug traffickers are also little concerned about how to dispose of the products used in the production of their illicit goods, which is also a problem for the neighborhood.
“Just to give you an idea of the size, clandestine laboratories where there is the manufacture of synthetic drugs, this produces a large amount of toxic waste. It is said that for every kilogram of methamphetamines produced, between five and six kilos of toxic waste are produced, ”said Sergeant Stéphane Tremblay.
“Obviously, often this toxic waste is often poured down the drain or in fields, to the detriment of the environment. ”
The dismantling operation is led by the Drummondville Organized Crime Coordination and Investigation Team (EECCO). This brings together police officers from the Sûreté du Québec as well as municipal police services from Montreal and Terrebonne.