Pubdate: Sat, 14 Jan 2012
Source: Windsor Star (CN ON)
Copyright: 2012 The Windsor Star
Author: Trevor Wilhelm, The Windsor Star


13 Arrested; Cash and Drugs Seized

Police have taken down a gang of "wannabe kingpins" including one drug 
dealer who was released from prison while fighting a narcotics 
conviction, then allegedly went right back to selling cocaine.

Investigators said they arrested 13 people who made up "a major 
organized group" in Windsor's drug scene, including initial target 
Shawn Joseph Evon, who is currently appealing a narcotics trafficking 

The joint forces probe also took $355,785 worth of drugs off the 
street along with a loaded handgun and $331,353 in cash, which Windsor 
police say was likely their largest money seizure ever.

"The amount of drugs that are bought and purchased at that level, you 
need a large amount of money for them to buy six, seven, eight kilos 
of cocaine at $40,000 each," said Windsor police Insp. Randy Gould.

"It's not 'I'll owe you,' it's 'where's the cash for my dope.' The 
fact that he had that much money means we got him just before he made 
a decent buy."

The investigation lasted 41/2 months. It came to a head Monday with a 
series of pre-dawn raids meant to catch the sleeping criminals off 
guard. More than 80 officers, including the Windsor police Drugs, 
Intelligence, Guns and Surveillance unit and the OPP Organized Crime 
Enforcement Bureau, executed five warrants in Windsor and one in LaSalle.

Police seized 2,312 grams of cocaine powder, about a pound of crack 
cocaine, 16.8 pounds of marijuana plus six joints, 397.6 grams of 
magic mushrooms and 68.25 grams of marijuana resin plus another vial of resin.

They also found six 100 mg morphine pills, seven 40 gram Oxycodone 
tablets, 34 Diazepam pills and 47 nabilone synthetic marijuana 
pills.Along with the drugs, police seized a canister of prohibited 
bear spray and a loaded .357 Hy Hunter revolver handgun.

Gould said most of the drugs were destined for sale in the Windsor and 
Essex County area.

"I think everyone would recognize that we are a major pipeline for 
narcotics coming from the United States into Canada," he said.

"Some of it stays in our community and some of it goes down the highway."

In addition to Evon, police nabbed Raymond John Caza, Michael Allan 
Broughton, Jason Potter and Gerald Keith Lauzon. They also arrested 
eight other people but have not released their names.

The suspects, all previously known to police, face a total of 76 
charges. The counts include conspiracy to traffic in controlled 
substances, possession of controlled substances for the purpose 
trafficking, trafficking in controlled substances, possession of 
controlled substances, weapons offences, possession of proceeds of 
crime, breach of probation and breach of recognizance.

Gould said the suspects are considerable players in Windsor's drug 
world, but rejected the suggestion they were high -evel "kingpins."

"I wouldn't say they're kingpins," said Gould. "They're wanna be 
kingpins maybe."

Gould said Evon was the prime target of the investigation. He was 
sentenced last August to four years in prison after being convicted on 
multiple counts of possession of drugs for the purpose of trafficking.

The conviction stemmed from Evon's arrest in July 2008 when police 
searched his Queen Street home. Officers seized 520 percocet, 35 
oxycodone pills, 120 morphine tablets, 52.7 grams of powder cocaine 
and 48.2 grams of crack cocaine.

They also found 110 grams of powdered ecstasy, which was enough to be 
processed into more than 900 pills, along with $36,500 in cash bound 
in duct tape.

Evon launched an appeal of his conviction and was released from 
custody while it winds its way through the court system. Evon's 
lawyer, Maria Carroccia, couldn't be reached for comment Friday.

"Shortly after he was released, our drug unit was receiving 
information that he was active again in the trafficking of narcotics, 
so we recommenced our investigation upon him and other parties to his 
drug trafficking," said Gould.

"It typifies his attitude toward the justice system," Gould added later.

He said the court system's "revolving door syndrome" is a constant 
concern for police.

"We always want to see high sentences handed out to help us stem the 
problem," said Gould.

"Then the justice system is stymied somewhat by their rules and 
regulations too. We tend not to be overly happy with the results 
sometimes, but we understand where all or partners in the judicial come from."

Police said they hope this week's seizure will also stem the flow of 
drugs in Windsor at least for a little while. But they're also being realistic.

"We always enjoy making a good seizure," said Gould.

"We're also realistic in knowing that we're still getting a pittance 
of what is out there. That's why, with our partners, we continue to 
hammer away at them and hopefully slow it down."
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