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Months of investigation lead to Hay River drug package arrest

A file photo of the Hay River RCMP detachment in November 2018. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio
The Hay River RCMP detachment. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio

A man faces cocaine trafficking charges after a suspicious package at a Hay River courier service sparked an investigation lasting more than a year, police say.

According to RCMP, a 41-year-old man – who was not publicly named – appeared in court this month after an investigation that can be traced back to December 2021.

That month, police say they were alerted to “a number of packages suspected to be involved in the illicit drug trade.”

The RCMP Federal Arctic Unit was brought in to assist, the packages were searched and 286 grams of suspected crack cocaine were found inside, police said, alongside $10,400 in cash.



With help from a forensics team and Health Canada’s drug analysis service, police say a “long-term investigation” resulted in the 41-year-old’s arrest. He is charged with possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking, possession of property obtained by crime, and laundering the proceeds of crime.

“These investigations often do take time and require input beyond the detachment level, which was the case here,” said RCMP spokesperson Cst Josh Seaward.

In a statement, police urged anyone with tips to contact their local detachment or leave a message anonymously online.

“The general public remains the best source of information relating to illicit drug trafficking in the Northwest Territories,” RCMP stated.