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Calgary Criminal Law & Misdemeanours Law Blog

What are the penalties for drunk driving in Alberta?

On July 1, 2012, Alberta changed the penalties for driving with a blood-alcohol concentration of .08 per cent or higher, and on Sept. 1, 2012, penalties for a BAC of .05 per cent or higher were also altered. In an effort to reduce the number of alcohol-related fatalities, fines for these charges were eliminated, and a greater emphasis was put on mandatory treatment courses and the use of ignition interlock devices, which prevent individuals who do not pass a breath test from being able to start a vehicle.

The penalties for a first-time impaired driving conviction with a BAC of .08 per cent or higher include a criminal charge, a driver's license suspension, vehicle seizure, use of an ignition interlock system and a mandatory Planning Ahead Course. A second and third conviction also carry these penalties with increasing durations, but the required Planning Ahead course is replaced by a mandatory Impact course.

Alberta man charged with multiple sex offences

A Thorsby man has been charged with multiple offences in connection with activities that he allegedly committed against children, according to RCMP and the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team. The charges were filed in response to sexual offences reportedly committed against four individuals in four different cases. The defendant was taken into custody on Aug. 19 on one count of invitation to sexual touching, four counts of sexual interference and five counts each of child luring, breach of conditions and sexual assault.

The defendant was first taken into custody in June 2013, though investigators believe that the alleged offences began late in 2009. In May 2014, the Child Exploitation Unit of ALERT became involved when the case expanded to include two more alleged victims.

2 people receive drug charges after raid

The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team and the Lethridge Regional Police Service raided a business and apartment suite on Aug. 27. The two searches were connected to an investigation into suspected drug trafficking that ALERT investigators believed was taking place in Lethbridge. The name of the business that was raided has not been released to the public.

During the searches, authorities say that they seized unknown quantities of psilocybin, marijuana and cocaine. The total street value of all of the drugs combined was reported to be approximately $24,000. In addition to the drugs, officers seized $65,000 in cash, a Ford Escape and a Dodge truck.

Modified Glock and other weapons seized from home

The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team detained a 29-year-old man at his home in Fort McMurray on Aug. 19. According to investigators, the man was found to be in possession of thousands of rounds of ammunition and dozens of firearms when a search warrant was executed. Because of the search, the man now faces multiple weapons charges, including unsecured storage of firearms, possession of a prohibited firearm and unlawful altering of a firearm.

One firearm that was seized during the raid was a modified Glock. With the modifications, the weapon could reportedly fire 1,200 rounds of ammunition in one minute. It was also reported that several of the firearms in the man's home were not stored properly. When the raid was conducted, three children were in the home. All of the weapons found were reportedly registered to the accused man.

2 men accused of drug trafficking after raids

On Aug. 15, the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team executed two search warrants at homes in Fort McMurray. The alleged drug busts were reportedly a response by law enforcement to information that they had gathered from members of the public about suspected drug trafficking in the Timberlea area. Officers from Wood Buffalo RCMP also helped to execute the search warrants.

Because of the two drug raids, police detained a 19-year-old Edmonton man and a 43-year-old Fort McMurray man. Both men reportedly with police orders while they were being taken into custody. They have both been charged for drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and possession of proceeds from criminal activity.

High-speed chase ends in numerous criminal charges

A man was handed several criminal charges after a high-speed police chase in Alberta. The incident took place on July 31 while the Saskatchewan man was traveling along Highway 16 in Vegreville at excessive speeds. After receiving several reports about the driver, the RCMP attempted unsuccessfully to conduct a traffic stop. Authorities eventually forced the driver to stop by deploying a spike belt at Elk Island Park.

When the 49-year-old man was taken into police custody, he was charged for impaired driving, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, flight from a peace officer while being pursued, stealing gas and possession of marijuana. It is unclear what quantity of marijuana the man was alleged to be in possession of.

Alberta Red Scorpions members charged with alleged drug crimes

According to police statements, four individuals, allegedly part of the British Columbia-based Red Scorpions gang, were charged with selling drugs and weapons in the Airdrie, Red Deer and Calgary areas in July 2014. The charges were based on the results of search warrants that allegedly uncovered drugs, guns and cash.

The four were described as one "gang member," a 29-year-old man, and three "associate members," a 23-year-old woman, a 52-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman. The "gang member" faces 14 total charges while the "associate members" face an unknown number of charges. Police say that additional arrests may be forthcoming.

Police seize drugs, cash and other items during raid

The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team, or ALERT, seized several items from a home in Red Deer during a drug search on July 17. Members of ALERT, Red Deer RCMP and RCMP Police Dog Services conducted the raid after obtaining a search warrant. Following the search, three men were taken into custody and accused of drug offences.

As a result of the search, a 33-year-old man was detained and charged for possession of various drugs for the purpose of trafficking. Police allege that the man had methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, GHB and Oxycodone. Details about the charges that may have been filed against the other two men were not immediately available.

Alberta raid leads to possession, trafficking charges

On July 16, officials from the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team's Green Team and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police shut down a marijuana growing operation near Millet. As a result of the raid, a 22-year-old Wetaskiwin man has been charged with possession of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking and production. The investigation is reportedly ongoing and may lead to additional charges and other individuals being taken into custody.

According to officers, the investigation into the grow-op site began after an anonymous tipster reported it to Crime Stoppers. Although the land was designated as a legal medicinal marijuana grow-op site, officers allegedly discovered almost double the amount of plants authorized to be grown under Health Canada's medicinal marijuana rules. Police seized the 372 marijuana plants and growing equipment they found during the operation. The plants are reportedly valued at $445,000.

Motorcycle rider charged with stunt driving and DWI

An Alberta man is facing multiple charges after being stopped for speeding on July 5. The driver was stopped and charged with being over 80 mgs, DWI and stunt driving.

An officer with the East Algoma OPP detachment spotted the motorcyclist travelling at a high rate of speed on Highway 17, according to reports. The officer checked the motorcyclist's speed with radar, which reportedly registered a speed of 152 km/h. The incident occurred in a 70 km/h zone. The officer reportedly determined that the motorcyclist had consumed alcohol. The officer took the driver into custody on suspicion of impaired driving. On Sept. 4, he is slated to appear in Blind River at the Ontario Court of Justice.