St. Albert, Alberta – On February 5, 2019, St. Albert RCMP received a report of suspicious items that might mean that drug production had been occurring in a rental garage located in the Mission neighbourhood of St. Albert. After a brief inspection of the garage, RCMP secured the property for safety reasons.
On February 6, 2019, the Federal RCMP Clandestine Laboratory Enforcement and Response (CLEAR) team attended the scene. CLEAR is a specialized police unit responsible for dismantling clandestine drug laboratories and processing the hazardous materials often found within. The Federal RCMP CLEAR team, based at RCMP “K” Division Headquarters, is a federally funded unit that undergoes specialized training and has access to special equipment that allows them to process material that is too dangerous for other police officers to touch.
The St. Albert RCMP, and the Federal RCMP CLEAR team were assisted by St. Albert EMS and Fire Services, in their work to ensure that the garage and the surrounding neighbourhood is safe. No member of the public was put at risk by this incident, but the RCMP does warn that criminals may look for property where they can manufacture or store drugs. If you suspect that you know where a clandestine illicit drug laboratory is, contact your local police. They can investigate whether any illegal activity is taking place and can contact the Federal RCMP CLEAR team to assist if required.
So What Can a Landlord Do?
Illegal drug use can and does affect many communities, even safe cities like St. Albert. Some Organized Crime groups look for properties they can rent in quiet, residential or rural areas to use for drug trafficking and for drug manufacturing. But these rental properties are at a higher risk for being vandalized, damaged by mold or drug residue, catching on fire from tampered electrical wires, and for becoming “that undesirable property” that upsets all the neighbours. On top of this, often the tenants do not make their rent payments and the landlord can be left with costly repairs or cleanup bills.
Good advice for landlords is to join the Crime Free Multi Housing (CFMH) program – even if you do not have multi-housing properties. The Crime Free Multi Housing program teaches landlords how to recognize warning signs of property misuse, what to consider when selecting a tenant and what crime prevention steps may reduce problems on or around your property. St. Albert RCMP welcome new partners in the Crime Free Multi Housing program and encourage landlords to contact [email protected] for information about the next CFMH training.
If you have information about this crime and would like to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), online at p3tips.com, or with the P3 Tips app. Crime Stoppers does not collect information about your identity. A tip leading to an arrest may be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.
St. Albert RCMP
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