Oceanside RCMP played a key role in the recovery of more than $100,000 of stolen goods — including firearms, generators and jewelery — by the Saanich Police Department from a residence along the Patricia Bay Highway.
“To put it bluntly, it’s huge,” said Saanich Police Department Sgt. Steve Eassie about the recovery. “We haven’t had anything that comes close to this.”
Eassie told The NEWS $100,000 is a conservative estimate, noting the stolen goods include at least one $6,000 ring and many family heirlooms. He said the stolen goods have been linked to incidents in the Greater Victoria area and as far north as Parksville on Vancouver Island, as well as Nelson and the Lower Mainland.
A total of 90 charges, 45 each, have been approved by Crown counsel against a 45-year-old male and 26-year-old female, both Saanich residents. The charges include 17 counts each for possession of stolen property under $5,000 and 19 counts each for dealing with an identity document without excuse. The 45-year-old male has been remanded in custody.
In October, Oceanside RCMP arrested two men who allegedly broke into the Qualicum Beach Inn. Upon searching a vehicle associated with the two men, local Mounties uncovered a handgun, a shotgun and one kilogram of crystal methamphetamine.
According to a news release issued by Saanich Police Department, the Saanich Police Street Crime Unit, with the assistance from the crime analyst, identified a female of interest that appeared to be in a relationship with one of the suspects arrested in Qualicum Beach.
“Upon request of the Saanich police, the Oceanside RCMP located and arrested (a female) in relation to a (break and entry) in Saanich,” Oceanside RCMP Cpl. Jesse Foreman told The NEWS. “She was held in our custody and later released to members of the Saanich Police Department.”
Saanich police investigated a potential link to a July ATM theft file in Saanich based on information and surveillance footage photographs.
This led to a search warrant for a residence in the 5800 block of the Pat Bay Highway where police found more than $100,000 of suspected stolen property. Police seized generators, tools, jewellery, personal identification and firearms.
Saanich police said numerous property owners have since been identified and contacted, but a large amount of personal property remains unidentified and unclaimed.
Investigators said they are looking to identify all the property owners to return stolen goods and recommend further charges as warranted.
To view the unclaimed, stolen goods visit the Saanich Police Department website at www.saanichpolice.ca.
A tip line has been set up to assist those seeking information regarding the property associated to this investigation. Please contact the Saanich Police Department’s non-emergency line at 250-475-4321 ext. 2100.