Brothers arrested during drug sting

Two brothers are facing drug charges following a sting operation by Mounties.

Two brothers are facing drug charges following a sting operation by Mounties.

Brian Quatell, 39, and Travis Drake, 30, were arrested Jan. 28, near the Quinsam Hotel in Campbellton. A search of the suspect’s vehicle, a Dodge Neon, turned up cocaine, heroin, three knives and drug paraphernalia.

Quatell appeared in Campbell River provincial court on Monday for a bail hearing. According to federal Crown prosecutor Paul Corbett, police were provided with a cell phone number for an alleged dial-a-dope operation. An officer made the call and arranged for a “40 buy.” Around 7 p.m., RCMP arrived near the Quinnie pub, spotted the suspect vehicle and then activated the police car emergency lights. According to the police report, the suspect vehicle started backing up, but an officer on foot grabbed a male passenger through the window and that’s when the driver stopped.

Following a search, officers recovered a black cell phone which had their number listed in the directory. They also found 11 “spitballs” of cocaine totally 4.37 grams, 1.38 grams of heroin, $1,016 in cash, three knives, score sheets and assorted drug-related paraphernalia.

Police also monitored incoming cell calls and received several drug orders. One man asked if they had anything new because the “last batch was bad” and made him ill. Another buyer wanted to know when the delivery would happen.

Corbett asked Judge Thomas Dohm for Quatell’s detention. The court also heard that Quatell was on bail at the time for an alleged theft and assault which occurred at Superstore last September. As well, he has a substance abuse problem and is taking methadone.

Duty counsel lawyer Angie Penhall asked for Quatell’s release on bail, noting that he has a place to stay and an offer to work with his father and uncle in Powell River.

She added that the money seized during the bust was Quatell’s savings that he planned to use for rent and other expenses.

Judge Dohm didn’t appear impressed and ordered Quatell’s detention.

Drake was released on a $2,500 recognizance requiring no cash deposit or surety. However, he is on strict conditions including a no-go order to the Quinsam Hotel, a nightly curfew, to not possess any cell phones or electronic communication devices, and to not possess any weapons.

Both brothers are charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession for the purpose of trafficking and trafficking. Quatell is also charged with possession of a prohibited weapon, a folding knife.