An online dispensary warehouse in Vaughan was among seven illegal storefronts closed and illicit cannabis with a potential street value of more than $600,000 was seized by the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP)-led Provincial Joint Forces Cannabis Enforcement Team (PJFCET).
The team executed nine search warrants at the following locations Feb. 6:
- Bayfield Bongs on Bayfield Street in Barrie
- St. Paul Smoke Shop on St. Paul Street in St. Catharines
- Farmers Link, online dispensary warehouse on Bradwick Drive in Vaughan
- The Planet 60 on Finch Avenue West in Toronto
- Kingston Chronic on Kingston Road in Toronto
- Lawrence Smoke Shop on Lawrence Avenue East in Toronto
- B Loud Cannabis, on Kennedy Road South in Brampton
- a residence on Cupola Crescent in Toronto
- a suspect's vehicle.
The businesses were not authorized by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (ACGO) to sell cannabis or cannabis products, according to an OPP news release. These illicit storefronts will be held under interim closure orders as per section 18(1) of the Cannabis Control Act (CCA), police added.
As a result of the execution of the search warrants, the following items were seized:
- more than 63 kilograms of dried cannabis flower
- 901 packages of cannabis edibles
- 536 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) vape pens
- 214 grams of butane hash oil (shatter)
- 436 grams of hashish
- 283 packages of psilocybin
- One prohibited weapon (brass knuckles)
- Cell phones
- Approximately $50,000 in Canadian currency.
This investigation was supported by the OPP Special Entry Unit and the OPP Urban Search and Rescue, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosives, Response Team (UCRT). Peel Regional Police and the York Regional Police also supported this investigation.
Seven individuals were arrested and charged with 26 offences under the Cannabis Act, CC and Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. All of the accused were released from custody and are to appear before an Ontario Court of Justice in Newmarket on Feb. 26, 2024.
Any person with information regarding the illegal sale of cannabis should immediately contact the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 and ask to provide information to the Provincial Joint Forces Cannabis Enforcement Team. Should you wish to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).
About Illicit Cannabis
It is against the law to purchase cannabis from anywhere other than online through the Ontario Cannabis Store or an Ontario-authorized, licensed retail store.
Legal vs. Illegal Cannabis
- Cannabis product packages are marked in consistent ways. Learn more about the product indicators of legal cannabis.
- The use of illegal cannabis also increases personal risk. Learn more from the Government of Canada regarding the risks of illegal cannabis.
- Individuals who purchase cannabis from an illegal source, whether it is a storefront, online or a dealer, are committing a crime.
- Profits from illegal cannabis sales are often laundered to finance other criminal activities including illegal drugs, firearms and human trafficking.