(Ottawa, ON- January 14, 2016) - A joint forces police operation involving the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) “O” Division Ottawa Detachment Financial Crime unit dubbed Project ATTAR has resulted in two properties belonging to the Alkhalil Organization being restrained. The assistance provided by FINTRAC (Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada) played a significant role in this proceeds of crime investigation. Hisham Alkhalil was the primary subject of this investigation which resulted in charges laid against nine individuals, the seizure of 24.5kilograms of cocaine and the dismantling of an Ottawa-based drug trafficking network in 2014, Project Anarchy.
One of the two properties restrained is a restaurant located at 354 Olmstead St in Ottawa and the other property located at 175 Promenade Du Portage that houses a bar in Gatineau, their combined worth is approximately $1.4 million. Hisham Alkhalil has already been subject to a restraint order placed on a property located on Rossland Avenue in Ottawa in late January 2014, worth approximately $1.1 million.
Alkhalil’s preliminary hearing is set to resume February 8th, 2016, in Ottawa where he is facing drug-related charges.
Ronald Lauzon, the Acting Officer in Charge of the RCMP Ottawa Detachment states “Organized crime groups seek to profit from their illicit activities whenever and however they can. Organized crime groups involved in drug trafficking are creative in their strategies to evade law enforcement and in the concealing of their illicit funds. The objective of Project ATTAR was to further disrupt and dismantle this drug trafficking network financially and to prevent further acts of criminal activity. The collaboration between law enforcement agencies was the ‘key’ to the success of this financial investigation.”
Inspector Mike Laviolette of the Ottawa Police Service states “Organized Crime of this nature is complex. It is imperative that law enforcement focus on the financial aspect in addition to operations because that is why they do what they do. Taking away their financial gains is the true penalty for their crimes.”
"Seizing assets from those that willingly victimize others is the next step in holding those who commit crimes, accountable. It's clear from the results that it's not only beneficial but, imperative that police services continue to work collaboratively in identifying, investigating and apprehending criminals," said Chief Superintendent Rick Barnum, OPP Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau.
The RCMP plays an active role in the fight against proceeds of crime by identifying, assessing, seizing, restraining and dealing with the forfeiture of illicit wealth accumulated through criminal activities. Criminal network groups such as this one, seek to profit from their illegal activities. Illicit profits undermine the social and economic well-being of Canadians and increase the power and influence of organized criminals and their illegal enterprises.
For media inquiries contact:
OPS, Media Relations Section
Telephone: 613-236-1222, ext. 5366
OPP Media Relations,
Sgt. Kristine Rae
RCMP Media Relations,
‘O’ Division (Ontario)
Sgt. Penny Hermann
Website: RCMP in Ontario