Essex OPP officials allege: On November 18, 2020, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP)-led Provincial Joint Force Cannabis Enforcement Team (PJFCET) executed a Cannabis Act search warrant at a greenhouse operation at Mersea Road in Leamington.
PJFCET, members of the Essex County Detachment, Essex County Crime Unit, OPP Regional Community Street Crime Units (CSCU), along with members of the OPP Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau (OCEB), Emergency Response Team (ERT) and Tactics and Rescue Unit (TRU) seized just over 75,000 cannabis plants and over 5,300 pounds of processed cannabis.
The total value of seized cannabis is estimated to be over $80-million dollars.
10 individuals, one from North York, one from Scarborough, three from Markham and five of no fixed address, are charged under the Cannabis Act (CA) with Possessing Cannabis for the Purpose of Selling, section 10(2) CA and Cultivate, Propagate or Harvest any cannabis plant at a place that is not their dwelling-house, section 12(6) (a) CA.
The accused will appear at the Ontario Court of Justice in Leamington at a later date.
The investigation is ongoing.
The PJFCET is responsible for enforcing the cannabis laws and investigating criminal enterprises that exploit or abuse the legal cannabis market.
“The proliferation of illegal marihuana grow operations, as evidenced by this recent significant seizure in Leamington, demonstrates the resolve by criminal enterprise groups to profit from illegal activity,” stated Inspector Glenn Miller, OPP Essex County Detachment Commander.
“To those individuals or groups who continue to profit from these illegal grow operations, the OPP will relentlessly pursue your interests, seize your property and introduce you into the criminal justice system.”