Charges laid against 3 Ontario residents after smuggling 1.5 tonnes of cocaine into Canada

January 18, 2023
Kitchener, Ontario

News release


A complex investigation by the CBSA and the RCMP led to the seizure of more than 1.5 tonnes (1,584 kg) of cocaine concealed inside a cargo container in Saint John, New Brunswick.
1.5 tonnes of cocaine seized in Saint John, New Brunswick (NB) as part of an investigation by the CBSA and the RCMP.

The RCMP Federal Police Transnational Serious and Organized Crime (TSOC) team from the Kitchener detachment, with the assistance of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), the Brantford Police Service and Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC), have unraveled a sophisticated international drug importation scheme leading to multiple charges against three individuals.

The investigation began in the fall of 2021, after CBSA Intelligence received information about exported shipments originating from Central America. The CBSA, in partnership with RCMP's TSOC team, worked to identify the shipments and the individuals involved. In December 2021, the CBSA began tracking a marine shipping container of interest exported from Central America with a final destination of Saint John, NB. The investigation revealed that the container's contents were imported by a Brantford resident.

In early January 2022, border services officers in Saint John, New Brunswick, seized more than 1.5 tonnes of cocaine concealed within industrial machinery. The total value of the seized cocaine on the current illicit market was approximately $198,000,000 CAD. Evidence was turned over to the New Brunswick and Ontario RCMP for further investigation.

A joint investigation was initiated resulting in the Kitchener RCMP and Brantford Police executing search warrants in Brantford and New Hamburg this week.

The following individuals have been charged:

Kyle Alexander PURVIS (35) of Brantford

  • Importing Cocaine contrary to Section 6(1) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act
  • Possession for the Purpose of Trafficking contrary to Section 5(2) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act

Adam KAUP (42) of New Hamburg:

  • Unlawfully Importing Cocaine contrary to Section 6(1) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act
  • Conspiracy to Import Cocaine contrary to Section 465(1)(c) of the Criminal Code

Vincenzo CAPOTORTO (47) of Brantford

  • Unlawfully Importing Cocaine contrary to Section 6(1) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act
  • Conspiracy to Import Cocaine contrary to Section 465(1)(c) of the Criminal Code

The accused are scheduled to appear in court on January 19 (CAPOTORTO), and January 20 (KAUP), 2023, in the Brantford Courthouse, 44 Queen Street, Brantford, Ontario.

"The RCMP's TSOC team is very pleased with the results of this effective partnership with the CBSA, FINTRAC and the Brantford Police Service. The considerable volume and value of this seizure also represents a significant financial setback to the gangs and organized crime that victimize Canadians by trafficking in these harmful narcotics. These results speak to the continuous efforts and commitments the RCMP and our partners bring to public safety."

Insp L. De Simone, Officer in charge, London- Kitchener Detachments

"Thanks to the coordinated efforts of our teams in both the Atlantic and GTA Regions along with partner agencies, these successful results have demonstrated the CBSA's unwavering commitment to protecting our borders from illicit substances."

Lisa Janes, Regional Director General, Greater Toronto Area Region, Canada Border Services Agency

"This accomplishment serves as a reminder of the importance role of financial intelligence in the fight against drug trafficking and organized crime, as well as the partnerships that exist between FINTRAC, the RCMP and the CBSA."

Barry MacKillop, Deputy Director, Intelligence Sector

"As evidenced in this successful investigation, cross-agency collaboration is essential to combat organized crime and beneficially impact community safety. The Brantford Police Service is proud to be a partner and I would like to thank the officers involved for their outstanding efforts."

Chief Rob Davis, Brantford Police Service

Quick facts

Law enforcement agencies work diligently to make our communities a safer place to live but your assistance in remaining vigilant and informing us of any suspicious activities will help us be even more effective. If you have any information related to smuggling, drug importation, trafficking, or possession, or wish to report other criminality, contact local police, or through the contacts below:

· RCMP Kitchener Detachment at 519-896-3542

· Ontario RCMP at 1-800-387-0020

· The confidential CBSA Border Watch toll-free line at 1-888-502-9060

· Anonymously through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), at any time


Contact information

Media Relations
RCMP O Division (Ontario)

Twitter: @RCMPONT
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Website: RCMP in Ontario

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