Raid on Saanich home nets police $250,000 in drugs, two arrested

Two alleged high-level drug dealers with suspected gang ties were arrested after Victoria police carried out a raid that netted $250,000 in drugs, most of it stashed in hidden compartments of vehicles.

Victoria police’s strike force section targeted the two men, with suspected ties to the Independent Soldiers gang in the Lower Mainland, after they moved to Greater Victoria in mid-March.

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Undercover officers watched the pair and saw evidence of upper-level drug dealing that funnelled drugs to the street community.

On April 10, officers raided a home in the 3100 block of Tillicum Road, near Tillicum Centre, in Saanich.

Two men were arrested, and police searched the home and two vehicles.

Investigators found hidden compartments in the vehicles that contained bags of drugs and a semi-automatic handgun with ammunition.

Police seized 1.5 kilograms of cocaine, 1.2 kilograms of methamphetamine and more than 300 grams of heroin, along with $6,500 cash.

The drugs — which Insp. Brian Fox said have a street value of $250,000 — were displayed Thursday at police headquarters.

Fox said taking that large a quantity of drugs off the street will have a big impact on the illegal drug trade as well as property crime.

According to the police department, a $20 rock of cocaine, or about 0.3 grams, is typically traded for stolen goods such as a laptop, bike or smartphone, and “1.5 kilograms of cocaine off the street means up to 5,000 items that do not need to be stolen to feed drug addiction.”

Arash Younus, 30, and Dustin Wadsworth, 31, are charged with five counts of possession of drugs for the purpose of trafficking, one count of possession of a prohibited firearm with ammunition, one count of possession of a firearm contrary to a court order and one count of owning or operating a vehicle with a hidden compartment under the Armoured Vehicle and Aftermarket Compartment Control Act.

They are being held in custody.

kderosa@timescolonist.com

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