British Columbia: Border Guard arrested as accomplice in $6m in cocaine, guns and ammunition seized in border arrests
Canada and the United States "War on Drugs" was dealt a severe blow yesterday, when one of it's own was arrested as an accomplice in the transporting of $6 million dollar seizure of Drugs, Money and Guns at the British Columbia's Pacific Border crossing. Canadian Border services working on a tip, discovered a 6 six year veteran, 35 year old Surrey resident and Canadian Border Guard Baljinder Kandola was arrested in a sting for his involvment in allowing criminal organizations to pass through into Canada from the Unitied States with impunity. There is no word on how long Baljinder Kandola has been tied to Criminal Organized crime or how long his involvement has resulted in untold amounts of drugs, money and guns to pass freely through our borders in the 6 years he has been with Canada Border Services. This is certainly a blow to Border guards on both sides of the border who feel they in a losing the battle on the War on Drugs. This recent development certainly confirms that.
Shminder Johal, 34, and Herman Riar, 26, both of Richmond were charged by RCMP with smuggling the $6 million dollars of cocaine, money and guns. It is not reported if these two individuals were acting alone or part of a larger criminal organization. If these two criminals are part of a criminal organization and recent stories of executions of drug dealers in Surrey, who either lose, use or mishandle the drugs, money or guns in their possession, it would be in the criminals best interests to cooperate with police, as criminal organizations are fatally unforgiving with those entrusted with their coocaine, cash and guns who lose all their product when it is seized by Police.
Shortly after midnight Thursday waiting police officers watched their target, a border guard, wave two identical GMC suburbans past his post at the Pacific Highway Crossing.
Moments later the police swooped down on the two drivers - and found a shipment of 208 kilograms of cocaine, worth $6 million wholesale, plus three handguns and ammunition in one of the vehicles.
The late-night takedown was the culmination of a 13-month investigation by RCMP E Division officers and the Canada Border Services Agency.
A still shocked director Kim Scoville (Pacific Highway District CBSA) stands in front of $6 million of cocaine (and three guns) seized in arrests at the B.C./US border. This resulted in the arrest of a Canadian customs agent. $200,000 was also seized.View Larger Image View Larger Image
A still shocked director Kim Scoville (Pacific Highway District CBSA) stands in front of $6 million of cocaine (and three guns) seized in arrests at the B.C./US border. This resulted in the arrest of a Canadian customs agent. $200,000 was also seized.
The probe was sparked by a tip that a border guard had allegedly been allowing vehicles carrying contraband to pass through unexamined.
Baljinder Kandola, a 35-year-old Surrey resident and a border guard for six years, faces six criminal charges: importing cocaine into Canada, conspiracy to import cocaine, possession for the purposes of trafficking, importing a restricted firearm, breach of trust and bribery.
Shminder Johal, 34, and Herman Riar, 26, both of Richmond - face four criminal charges: importing cocaine, possession for the purposes of trafficking, conspiracy to import cocaine and importing a restricted firearm. The police said they later found $200,000 in Johal's residence.
RCMP Insp. Dan Malo of E Division's Border Integrity section, told a news conference today that "the evidence supports the belief that Mr. Kandola previously arranged with Mr. Johal safe passage through the port of entry at this specific time."
Malo said the conspiracy was part of an effort by organized crime to bring cocaine into the Lower Mainland.
"Nobody in Canada imports this quantity of cocaine without being involved with organized crime."
The police are unaware of how long the three men have known each other, Malo said.
"We just know that during these last 13 months, they knew each other very well."
None of the three men had previous criminal records.
Kim Scoville, Pacific Highway District director of the Canada Border Services Agency, told reporters that he had mixed feelings about the probe into Kandola's activities.
"It was a successful investigation. Unfortunately, one of our officers was a key figure."
Scoville said Kandola had previously passed a "reliability check" that is compulsory for all border guards. He added that "this is an incident involving a single officer and does not diminish the pride and confidence that we have in the men and women of the Canada Border Services Agency."
The CBSA has been hit by controversy in recent months.
Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day earlier this month launched an investigation into the online postings of CBSA recruits undergoing training in Quebec to become border guards. CBC News had revealed that recruits had posted photographs of themselves drinking while in uniform, called Prime Minister Harper a serial killer and referred to French Canadians as "f---ing bastards," all on the website Facebook.
Meanwhile, a former CBSA officer, Daniel Greenhalgh, was charged recently with has three counts of sexual assault. He is accused of inappropriately strip-searching an 18-year-old woman in a public washroom at the Douglas border crossing, where he worked.