Police crack down on Canada/U.S. border weapons operation
The Associated Press
TORONTO- Police have cracked down on a cross-border weapons smuggling operation in which guns were purchased in the United States and moved into Canada, investigators said Tuesday.
Several handguns discovered during a two-year, joint-force investigation dubbed Project Bluegrass were used in violent crimes in southern Ontario, including attempted murders and a jewelry store robbery in London, Ontario, where shots were fired at police, investigators said.
Police recovered 37 handguns, 15 in the Greater Toronto Area and said they believe one suspect _ an American living in the city _ was making handguns.
During a search of a Toronto residence, police uncovered firearm frames and parts, two 30-round magazines for a machine-type pistol and ammunition.
Riccardo Tolliver, 29, faces a number of firearms charges, including conspiracy to import firearms, conspiracy to traffic firearms and firearms trafficking.
Also charged is Sonita Langford, 24, of Toronto, and Sandip Ghosh, 25.
Local police partnered with the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for the investigation.
Toronto mayor David Miller has blamed the U.S. for exporting its problems of violence to the streets of his city. There were a record 52 gun-related deaths in Toronto last year _ almost twice as many as the previous year.