Officers charged nine people and seized more than $35 million in currency and property following a massive organized crime investigation spearheaded by the York Regional Police.
Dubbed ‘Project Sindacato,’ the initiative included investigators from the Canada Revenue Agency, the Ontario Provincial Police, Peel Regional Police, Canada Border Services and the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada.
“An investigation into the Figliomeni organized crime group began in early 2018, with a focus on its participation in a criminal organization, money laundering, loan sharking and illegal gaming,” reads a media release from police.
“During the course of the investigation, intelligence gathered indicated that the criminal organization was acting under the direction of Angelo Figliomeni. Its criminal activities included illegal gaming operations in the City of Vaughan as well as an extensive money laundering system to hide the immense profitability from these activities.”
Beginning last Friday (July 12), police in a number of jurisdictions executed 48 search warrants at residences, businesses and cafes were across the Greater Toronto Area.
Nine people were taken into custody and more than $35 million dollars worth of offence-related property and proceeds of crime was seized. Some of the property seized includes more than $1 million in currency, 27 mafia-owned homes and 23 high-end luxury vehicles, police said.
“These arrests signify the fall of power for the most significant ‘Ndrangheta crime family operating in York Region,” said Chief Eric Jolliffe.
“Over the past 18 months, we have invested heavily, using our finest and most highly-trained investigators to bring an end to this family’s international illegal gaming and money-laundering activities. We know that violence has occurred as a result of their activities and that our community is a safer place following these arrests and charges.”
Investigators also worked with the Italian State Police with multiple arrests made following the execution of search warrants in Calabria, Italy on Thursday (July 18).