A Kelowna woman is now facing drug charges following a thwarted summertime attempt to smuggle a high volume of cocaine into Canada.
Mounties alongside Canadian Border Service Agency representatives held a press conference Monday morning to announce that Caitlin Christine Gladdish, 26, is facing charges of importation of a controlled substance and possession for the purpose of trafficking.
The Kelowna woman allegedly had 35 kilograms of cocaine in a secret compartment of her Volkswagon Jetta, when she was caught July 26, 2014 at the Waneta port of entry near Trail.
Supt. Brad Britton said they don’t believe that Gladdish was acting alone, however, no other arrests have been made. It’s also unclear what south-of-the-border city, or even country, the drugs originated from.
He also couldn’t say where Gladdish’s alleged drug connection
The woman caught the attention of border service guards when they noticed an irregularity in her trunk, said Lorne Black, Chief of the CBSA.
Using a fiberscope, the agents then found numerous green-wrapped bricks. A little more probing showed that an illicit substance was within.
According to Brian Gately of the RCMP Federal Serious and Organized Crime Unit, tens of thousands of doses of coke have been taken out of commission.
“RCMP Federal policing and CBSA collaborative regularly to target cross border criminal activity,” said Gately. “This effective partnership prevented a significant amount of harmful and illegal drugs carom entering Canada and reading the streets of our community.”
The bust is the largest haul in the history of the Kootenays, police noted. Last year B.C. border serves officers seized 294 kilograms of cocaine through land, air and marine points.
If you have witnessed or are aware of an incident involving suspicious ross border acidity, please contact CBSA Border Watch at 1-888-502-9060.