An RCMP handout image shows drugs reported to have been seized during a vehicle stop near Enterprise in February 2020.
A three-month investigation led police to seize a pound of crack cocaine from a vehicle near the South Slave community of Enterprise on Sunday.
In a news release on Tuesday, RCMP said officers from its federal investigations unit stopped a vehicle travelling north near the community. Both occupants were arrested and the vehicle searched.
“Inside the vehicle, police located approximately one pound of crack cocaine,” police said.
“The vehicle stop was initiated as part of a three-month investigation into the trafficking of cocaine in the Northwest Territories.”
Related searches of apartments in downtown Yellowknife later found “evidence of drug trafficking,” police said. Two people were said to have been arrested but later released without charge.
RCMP said vehicle occupants Ronald Joseph Payne, 55, and Lyle Elliot Yanke, 61 – both from Yellowknife – face charges of cocaine trafficking and possession.
They appeared in court on Monday and are next due in court on March 23 in Hay River.
“In this case, we were able to arrest two individuals allegedly transporting drugs from Alberta into the NWT and seize the drugs before they were able to reach our communities to do more harm,” said Staff Sergeant Dean Riou.