Pubdate: Mon, 05 Jul 2004
Source: Surrey Now (CN BC)
Copyright: 2004 Lower Mainland Publishing Group Inc., A Canwest Company
Author: Tom Zytaruk
Bookmark: (Cocaine)


Surrey's Pacific Highway border crossing was the scene of three major
drug busts in recent weeks that hauled in a total 139 kilograms of

"We have over one million single doses of cocaine that are not going
to make it to the street," said Cpl. Scott Rintoul, of the RCMP E
division's drug awareness section.

"What percentage of the total cocaine that's imported into Canada does
this represent? We don't know."

Police have yet to lay charges in a case June 2 where a truck carrying
a load of wine from Berkely, California was stopped at the border
after customs officers noted a problem in paperwork and examined its
load. They seized 63 bricks of cocaine weighing 72.9 kilograms hidden
behind pallets of boxed wine.

On June 11, detector dog Speed sniffed out a duffel bag in a mini van
that contained 24 bricks of cocaine weighing 28.3 kilograms. Aracely
Dayana Corea, 30, of Vancouver and Yader Manuel Corea Martinez, 21, of
Burnaby were subsequently charged with possessing and importing cocaine.

On June 14, Speed sniffed out 36 packages of cocaine weighing 37.8
kilograms hidden in secret compartments in the floor and side panels
of an SUV. Aguilar Walther Orellana, 24, of Vancouver and Tyrone
Justin Lafrenier, 25, of Port Coquitlam were charged in that case.

Rintoul said that while the drug-using population is decreasing, users
are exhibiting "behaviour quite extreme."

"We're seeing younger and younger first-time users, an increase in
morbidity in youth," Rintoul said.

"We certainly believe there's more guns out there today than in years
past," he added.

But Rintoul noted that worldwide production and trafficking of cocaine
is decreasing.

The drug has been in B.C. since the 1980s.
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