Eight people have been arrested after a two-month investigation into the trafficking of prescription pills.
The Truro Police Service has dubbed the investigation “Operation Impact” and called in assistance from the H Division RCMP.
“It’s actually not really a Town of Truro issue, but across Canada, the abuse of these drugs is becoming more prevalent,” said Chief David MacNeil about prescription drugs, especially hydromorphone. “Almost every community across the provinces are dealing with this issue and we knew there were some individuals in our community that were involved in the trafficking of these drugs.”
Of the eight individuals arrested, six are Truro residents while the remaining two have addresses in Salmon River.
“These drugs are becoming the drug of choice with addicts. They are very powerful and very addictive,” said MacNeil. “There are a host of spin-off crimes that we see from these addictions. It’s a cycle. If we can eliminate some of the suppliers, it will be more difficult to obtain these drugs and hopefully it will help some people kick the addiction.”
MacNeil said the police service is making prescription pill trafficking a top priority because of the affect it has on not just the addict, but the families and community as well.
“It is our hope, that by consistently targeting the people who sell prescription pills in our community, it will help those who are battling with substance dependence seek treatment and overcome their addiction.”
Six of the eight arrested have been released and are scheduled to appear in Truro provincial court in the near future. Two remain in custody awaiting bail hearings and are also facing multiple counts of failing to comply with undertakings.
Three of the eight who have been charged hold prescriptions for hydromorphone-based pain killers.
While Operation Impact has concluded, MacNeil, however, stressed that investigations into trafficking prescription pills will continue.
“Through our investigation, we were able to glean that there are more people in the community involved in this so they will be investigation as equally aggressively,” he said.
The public is encouraged to contact the police to address illegal drug issues, especially if one thinks illegal activity is taking place in their neighbourhood. Anyone wishing to contact the Truro Police Service can do so by calling 895-5351, through the Facebook page or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Information can also be given through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
Those arrested and charged in Operation Impact:
- James Arthur MacPhail, 51, of 27 Exhibition St., Truro: Charged with four counts of trafficking hydromorphone and four counts of failing to comply with an undertaking
- Jackie Marie Noble, 41, of 123 Spruce Dr., Salmon River: Charged with three counts of trafficking hydromorphone
- Henry Joseph Brooks, 41, of 36 Lyman St., Truro: Charged with three counts of trafficking hydromorphone, four counts of failing to comply with an undertaking, one count of possessing a concealed weapon and one count of possession of a prohibited weapon
- John Roderick Fraser, 49, of 150 Young St., Truro: Charged with four counts of trafficking hydromorphone
- Elaine Fraser, 44, of 150 Young St., Truro: Charged with four counts of trafficking hydromorphone
- Eric Dale Stewart, 55, of 54 Alice St., Truro: Charged with four counts of trafficking hydromorphone
- Juanita Marie Golding, 58, of 61 Wood St., Truro: Charged with four counts of trafficking hydromorphone
- Tracy Lynn Fillmore, 41, of 38 Miller Rd., Salmon River: Charged with four counts of trafficking a schedule I substance and one count of possession of hydromorphone for the purpose of trafficking