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Criminal defense: Alberta man faces drug charges

An Edmonton man has been charged with drug trafficking following a bust that apparently led to a shipment of drugs being intercepted on their way to Saskatchewan. Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams worked in conjunction with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit in Saskatchewan in an effort to stem the traffic of the drug fentanyl across provincial borders. It is unclear whether the man charged in this operation has retained criminal defense representation at this time. 

Alberta police say they executed three search warrants on April 7, conducted predominantly by Edmonton-based authorities. The details of the execution of these warrants were not included in this report, but it has been confirmed the 36-year-old man was arrested and charged with several drug-related crimes. He will stand trial for three charges of possession of a controlled substance for trafficking purposes, three charges of trafficking, five breach of recognizance charges and five firearms offences. 

Police do not believe the man, along with a 38-year-old woman who was also arrested on firearms charges, is part of an organized crime group. As part of the operation, police say they stopped a shipment of some 500 fenatyl pills as well as various other drugs on its way to Regina. So far, no court date has been reported. 

In the case of a drug trafficking charge, especially one that was predicated on one or more search warrants being executed by Alberta authorities, there are a lot of ways such an operation can go wrong. If police did not adhere strictly to standards set out by law enforcement and the Canadian Charter, and the man's rights were breached in any way, there could be room for a criminal defense team to plea bargain or seek a reduction of the charges. In some circumstances, the charges may be dismissed entirely.

Source: CBC News, "Edmonton man charged in Alberta-Saskatchewan fentanyl bust", April 13, 2017

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