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Project Endgame

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Project Endgame

Project Endgame graphicCharges laid and $10 million in property seized in ongoing illegal gaming investigation

Investigators with the York Regional Police Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau - Guns, Gangs and Drug Enforcement Unit executed a search warrant at a 20,000 square foot residential property that is alleged to have been operating as an illegal casino and spa. Police seized 11 guns and more than $1 million in cash as part of an ongoing investigation into organized crime.

In May 2020, the York Regional Police Intelligence Unit and the Guns, Gangs and Drug Enforcement Unit began an investigation surrounding illegal gaming dens. This investigation dubbed Project End Game, commenced after police received information identifying underground casinos scattered throughout the City of Markham.

On July 3, 2020, investigators executed a search warrant at a commercial unit located at 3276 Midland Avenue which was being run as an illegal gaming house. Gaming tables, video slot machines and more than $20,000 was seized and five people were arrested.

On July 23, 2020, the York Regional Police Emergency Response Unit, with the assistance of tactical teams from the Ontario Provincial Police and Durham Regional Police Service, executed a search warrant at 5 Decourcy Court that was being operated as a high-end illegal casino. Thirty-two people were arrested at the house. Following a search of the residence, 11 firearms with ammunition were seized, along with more than $1 million in cash, gaming machines and tables, as well as more than $1.5 million in alcohol. The $9 million mansion has also been restrained.

On July 30, 2020, investigators executed a search warrant at a residence on Woodland Acres in the City of Vaughan. Three people were arrested and more than $70,000 in cash was seized along with various documentary evidence relevant to the illegal gaming operations.

"While the total value of these seizures is significant, this is only the start of our efforts to dismantle organized crime groups who are operating illegal gaming operations in York Region," said Chief Jim MacSween.

"The money moving through these underground casinos leads to huge profits for criminals that fund other ventures such as prostitution and drug trafficking. This illegal high-stakes gambling also leads to gun violence, armed robberies, kidnappings, extortion and other serious violent offences within our community. We will continue to target organized crime in York Region and use every tool at our disposal, including forensic accounting, to ensure these criminals are held accountable."

In total, 45 people have been arrested and 33 of them have been charged with more than 70 criminal offences. The investigation is on-going.

See a complete list of the people charged and the charges they face.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the York Regional Police Guns, Gangs and Drug Enforcement Unit at 1-866-876-5423, ext. 7817, or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-tips, leave an anonymous tip online at www.1800222tips.com

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