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Archived - New Arrests by the RCMP in Project Colisée

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Montréal,Thursday, November 27, 2008 – This week, the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) arrested suspects alleged to have conspired to export cannabis to the United States in 2005 or to have kept a gaming house. A total of 11 persons were charged. These arrests, directly linked to Project Colisée, were made almost two years to the day after the major November 2006 police operation which culminated in 91 individuals being charged.

In the course of their investigation in Project Colisée, the CFSEU officers uncovered a number of conspiracies to commit offences related to drug exportation and gaming houses. This information was part of the full disclosure of evidence in 2006, although no criminal charges against the suspects had been filed until now.

Conspiracies to keep a gaming house
Five men will face justice for offences that were allegedly committed between the months of October 2005 and November 2006. They are charged with illegally conspiring to keep a gaming house on Jean-Talon Boulevard in Montréal. They are also charged with benefiting from proceeds of crime and committing offences for the benefit of a criminal organization.

These charges stem from the Project Colisée investigation which revealed that the heads of the criminal organization controlled illegal gaming. Paolo Renda, Franscesco Arcadi, Rocco Sollecito, Francesco Del Balso and Lorenzo Giordano already faced similar charges and they all pleaded guilty. Five new subjects are now facing related charges.

They are:

  • Giuseppe SOLLECITO, 42, residing in Saint-Léonard
  • Giuseppe COLAPELLE, 34, residing in Saint-Léonard
  • Girolamo DEL BALSO, 34, residing in Laval
  • Nicola DIMARCO, 39, residing in Montréal
  • Louis MARCONE, 33, residing in Montréal-Nord

Conspiracies to export cannabis
The analysis of the evidence gathered in Project Colisée also revealed that six alleged conspirators exported close to 282 pounds of cannabis between March 26, 2005 and February 18, 2006. This led to a new series of charges for conspiracy to export cannabis, conspiracy to traffic in cannabis and conspiracy to possess property knowing that it was obtained or derived from cannabis trafficking. The charges were laid on November 25, 2008.

The individuals charged are:

  • Kamel Mahmoud AOUDE, 36, residing in Laval
  • Tarlochan BAJAJ, 41, residing in Pierrefonds
  • Giovanni, PETRELLA, 38, residing in St-Léonard
  • Anthony CAPITANIO, 32, currently detained at the Montréal Detention Centre
  • Antonio DELL'ERMO, 40, residing in Rosemère
  • Giuseppe TORRE, 37, currently detained at the Montréal Detention Centre

It should be noted that in November 2006, the CFSEU conducted searches that led to the arrest of many individuals, including Nicolo Rizzuto Sr., who were charged with several organized crime-related offences.

Project Colisée uncovered various criminal activities: conspiracy to import cocaine into Canada, corruption of Canada Border Services Agency officers and conspiracy to import indeterminate quantities of drugs using their services, bookmaking, attempted murder, as well as cocaine and cannabis trafficking. Close to 1,000 charges were laid at the time.

The CFSEU is a joint unit working under the coordination of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, in partnership with the Sûreté du Québec (SQ), Service de police de la Ville de Montréal, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), and Canada Revenue Agency.

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For information:

Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Communications Office
514-939-8308

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