Police seize Ecstasy pills from Toronto apartment
More than 23,000 Ecstasy pills were seized from a northwest Toronto apartment after police were called there on an unrelated matter, Toronto Police said today.
Officers from 31 Division were called to a Jane St. apartment, near Finch Ave., on "an unrelated matter" late Saturday night, Toronto Police Const. Wendy Drummond said this morning.
"When officers were there, they had seen things in plain view, so to speak, which caused them to get a search warrant," Drummond said.
Early Sunday morning, police carried out a Controlled Drugs and Substances Act search warrant at the apartment, where they found 23,540 Ecstasy pills and about 82.88 grams of marijuana, Drummond said.
Cong Chien Vu, 41, and Tho Phuoc Vi, 39, who lived in the apartment, and Van Hai Ngo, 43, of Toronto, were each charged with possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking and possession of marijuana, Drummond said. All of the men were known to police before this investigation, she added.
"It certainly is a significant seizure when you're talking about street-level ecstasy, but if you're talking about a criminal organization that's exporting bombs of MDMA — Ecstasy — it isn't as significant in those regards," said drug squad Staff-Insp. Mario Di Tommaso, whose unit was not involved in yesterday's seizure.
When organized crime groups who are exporting ecstasy pills across the border are busted, seizures will typically see "in the hundreds and hundreds of thousands of pills and sometimes in the millions," Di Tommaso said.
Earlier this year, a United Nations report named Canada as a major trafficking hub for synthetic drugs such as Ecstasy and methamphetamine.
Recently, cops started noticing an increasing amount of the two drugs being mixed under the guise of an Ecstasy tablet — a dangerous combination for pill-takers who don't realize they are inadvertently taking a highly addictive additive, Di Tommaso said.
It is a dangerous trick that can boost a trafficker's customer base from the party-going crowd that Ecstasy attracts to those jonesing for the cheap and easy-to-make meth.
"People that are buying the product (Ecstasy) have no idea of knowing what it is that they're getting. Frequently we find unscheduled compounds in MDMA and there's no one around to warranty exactly what product you're getting," Di Tommaso said. "So MDMA is not only dangerous in that respect, but we're finding that it is also being laced with amphetamine as well."
"The overall trend is to increase the addictive qualities of Ecstasy by putting in methamphetamine," Di Tommaso.
There was no indication whether yesterday's bust of Ecstasy tablets were laced with meth.
By TAMARA CHERRY, SUN MEDIA
Last Updated: 7th December 2009, 2:08pm
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