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Police Carry Out Raids in Ottawa, Toronto, U.S., Against Organized Crime

Ottawa, Canada (CP) -- Police carried out raids in Ottawa, Toronto, and in the United States on Wednesday as part of an operation to smash a North American organized crime network.

An Ottawa Police Department news release said "a massive, joint, law enforcement effort" dismantled a criminal network operating in Canada and the United States.

Witnesses said officers from two unmarked RCMP cars and three Ottawa police cars searched a two-storey brown brick house on busy street in southwest Ottawa.

Two teens, who left the house and drove off in a BMW, said they didn't know what was going on.

A neighbour named Maria said the raids were a worry.

"But I never realized anything myself except that they were all men here in the summer," she said.

In Toronto, police said in a statement that "the Greater Toronto Area Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) was part of an integrated series of arrests and searches throughout North America dealing with ecstacy, marijuana and money laundering."

News conferences were scheduled later in the day in Washington, Ottawa and Toronto. Police said no other details would be released until then.

The Canadian arm of the operation, nicknamed Project Codi, included Ottawa police, the RCMP, Ontario Provincial Police and the Canadian Border Service Agency.

The U.S. operation involved the Drug Enforcement Agency.

Police in Ottawa said the operations were not related to RCMP anti-terrorism raids conducted Monday.

Copyright Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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