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Large Cornwall gun seizure played part in Toronto police project

Police discovered that a notorious street gang in Toronto had been running guns through the border at Cornwall.
2018-06-22 guns seized
Guns seized as part of Project Patton. Steve Hammond/ Toronto Police Service

A cache of 60 handguns in the trunk of a car was intercepted in Cornwall.

The seizure was made by Toronto police officers last month as part of Project Patton, which has since resulted in 75 arrests.

Integrated Gun and Gang Task Force Acting Inspector Don Belanger said the guns, bought in Florida, were allegedly smuggled across the Canadian border with the US at Cornwall.

The largest single seizure of crime guns in TPS history also came with a special bulletin for other police officers: Many of the guns seized in Cornwall were multi-coloured -- just because a gun is another colour, it doesn't mean it's fake.

"This gun-smuggling operation has been dismantled. There is no doubt in the minds of investigators that these guns were for the streets of Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area, to be used and sold by members of the Five Point Generalz [gang]," said Belanger.

Toronto police added that the weapons, bought in Florida for approximately $500, would likely sell in Toronto for $4,000 because they are 'clean' -- free of a criminal past.

Project Patton has resulted in more than 1,000 charges, including participating in a criminal organization, firearms possession, drug possession and trafficking. Also seized in the operation were 270 rounds of ammunition, 75 firearms magazines, 55 overcapacity magazines, four conducted energy weapons or Tasers, and a bulletproof vest.

The Canada Border Services Agency and U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives partnered in this investigation. 

"Because the reach of the Five Point Generalz extended beyond our borders in the early days of this investigation, we requested support in terms of resources and personnel from the OPP, York and Peel Regional Police Services. Each of these agencies worked shoulder-to-shoulder with our investigators and deserve significant credit for the success of this project," said Belanger.

A 58-year-old man and a 37-year-old woman were arrested in Cornwall.

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