Individual selfhood is expressed in the self's capacity for self-transcendence and not in its rational capacity for conceptual and analytic procedures." Reinhold Neibuhr - Theologian/Author of the "Serenity Prayer"
|Posted On 01:42 by Qleap||0 comments|
Individual selfhood is expressed in the self's capacity for self-transcendence and not in its rational capacity for conceptual and analytic procedures." Reinhold Neibuhr - Theologian/Author of the "Serenity Prayer"
|Posted On 01:41 by Qleap||0 comments|
Individual selfhood is expressed in the self's capacity for self-transcendence and not in its rational capacity for conceptual and analytic procedures." Reinhold Neibuhr - Theologian/Author of the "Serenity Prayer"
|Posted On 08:16 by Qleap||0 comments|
MEMBERS of a small-town motorcycle club linked to the Hells Angels have failed in their appeal to retrieve their confiscated guns. A decision was handed down today by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal upholding a decision to cancel four Tramps bikies’ gun licences because of their membership and social associations with other gangs. The verdict comes almost a year after nine current and former members of the Tramps MC fronted the Firearms Appeal Committee, one of which is a mobile butcher, arguing that Victoria Police had no right cancel their licences. Club head Ronald Harding, who took leave to withdraw, butcher Michael Oxenham, Malcolm Dinsdale and David Windsor are now considering appealing the decision to the appeal court of the Victorian Supreme Court. In August 2012, Chief Commissioner Ken Lay made a controversial decision to seize more than 100 registered guns from members of “outlaw’’ bikie gangs across the state. The VCAT appeal, taken on by four Tramps members, was seen as a test case for other “outlaw’ bikie members who also had their gun licences cancelled. The guns were seized under the test to whether the licence holder was a “fit and proper’’ person.
|Posted On 06:23 by Qleap||0 comments|
Sydney outlaw motorcycle gang member has been arrested following the seizure of an overseas shipment of steroids. Three packages from Thailand containing 1.6 litres of a steroid were allegedly intercepted on March 13 by Customs officials. NSW Police identified one of the intended recipients as an alleged Comanchero member. On Tuesday, officers raided three premises at Liverpool and Mt Pritchard, in Sydney's southwest, and seized two bottles of a liquid believed to be a steroid. Other restricted substances, cash, empty vials, computers and importation documents were also seized during the raids. Police arrested the 32-year-old man and a 35-year-old woman who were charged with multiple counts of importing steroids and possessing a restricted substance. They were both granted conditional bail to appear at Campbelltown Local Court on June 19.
|Posted On 06:22 by Qleap||0 comments|
Guns and drugs have been seized in northern Tasmania after police targeted the Finks bikie gang. Police intercepted a car leaving the Spirit of Tasmania ferry wharf in Devonport, finding amphetamines with an estimated value of $15,000. A raid at a house in the northern town of Penguin resulted in three firearms, including an SKS fully automatic assault rifle, and a large amount of ammunition being seized. A 32-year-old Penguin man, who police say is affiliated with the Finks outlaw motorcycle gang, has been charged with drug trafficking and firearms offences. A 24-year-old woman from nearby Heybridge will also face firearms charges. The haul has led to the state opposition branding the ferry a "drug super highway", a claim dismissed as "alarmist" by the Tasmanian government. Earlier this month, Tasmanian police said they were confident they had smashed a major ring after seizing $2 million worth of drugs and making 11 arrests in the state's north. They are alleging the methamphetamines and cannabis in that haul arrived on domestic flights.
|Posted On 09:09 by Qleap||0 comments|
German police were on Friday searching the foundations of a warehouse belonging to the Hells Angels for the body of a Turk who disappeared two years ago, a day after launching a massive raid operation against the gang. Police said the disappearance of 47-year-old Tekin Bicer from the northern city of Kiel was being treated as suspicious. They believe his disappearance could be linked to a falling out with the gang over drug dealing. Police had completely emptied the warehouse on Thursday. Around 1 200 police on Thursday carried out raids on 89 properties including brothels, hotels and apartments linked to the Hells Angels, focusing on the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein of which Kiel is the capital. Five leading members of the chapter in Kiel were arrested, according to police. Preliminary investigations had also begun against 69 suspects
|Posted On 03:27 by Qleap||1 comments|
THE man believed by police to be the central figure in a bikie feud has declared he is not at fault for Sydney's spate of drive-by shootings and says they are the "act of a coward". Wissam Amer, 28, broke his silence to The Sunday Telegraph to say he was not at the heart of the current shootings between the Hells Angels and Nomads outlaw motorcycle gangs. Last week The Sunday Telegraph revealed police believe Amer was the source of the conflict after he defected from the Hells Angels to the rival Nomads. Speaking through his lawyer Maggie Sten, the former bikie said unequivocally that he was no longer part of any gang and disputed police claims he's responsible for the feud. "The conflict between the Hells Angels and the Nomads is dead and buried - it has been for a while," Mr Amer said through his lawyer. "It has got nothing to do with me." Mr Amer was previously a member of the Bandidos, but left the group during a large scale "patch-over" of its members to the Hells Angels more than a year ago. Police believe he then tried to leave the Hells Angels to join the Nomads and burned bridges along the way - however he disputes this. Ms Sten said Mr Amer now wants to clear the record and confirm he is not part of any gang and is attempting to get on with a "normal life". What is not in dispute, however, is that Mr Amer was the target of two drive-by shootings over the past seven months. One was a drive-by at a Merrylands Oporto, two days after he was released on bail; the other happened three days later at his previous address at Canley Vale. Police believe both attacks were committed by Hells Angels, however Mr Amer said he could not prove this and neither could police. Mr Amer is unsure who the perpetrators were. "It could have been anybody - it's a dirty game, it could have been someone that I'd had a run-in with years ago," Ms Sten said on Mr Amer's behalf. "I live my life with no fear - I live now as a normal person." What Mr Amer was sure about was that drive-by shootings on himself or anyone else was a despicable act. "It's as weak as scratching somebody's car - anybody who drives a car and attacks you at 1am is a coward," he said through Ms Sten. "Especially when you know the people you're looking for are not there," referring to cases where the alleged targets were in jail. He could not explain the forces behind the current wave of shootings, but agreed with a police theory - revealed by The Sunday Telegraph - that a third party is trying to reignite animosities between the groups. Authorities brokered a peace agreement between the two gangs in January, but that faltered on April 16 when shots were fired at a home and car in Pemulwuy. "We believe it's other people trying to stir the pot," Ms Sten said for Mr Amer. "This is the perfect time for people to attack because they know the Hells Angels and Nomads were in a previous conflict which no longer exists." Police Strike Force Kinnarra has locked up 13 people in relation to the nine shootings that happened last month. Detective Superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis said the conflict was firmly between the two gangs.
|Posted On 19:48 by Qleap||0 comments|
Winnipeg police have issued an arrest warrant for 26-year-old Jared James Irving. (photo provided by Winnipeg police)
Winnipeg police have issued an arrest warrant for 27-year-old Jesse Richard Thomas. (photo provided by Winnipeg police)
Winnipeg police have issued an arrest warrant for 30-year-old Shawn Justin Colbert. (photo provided by Winnipeg police)
Winnipeg police have issued an arrest warrant for 34-year-old Adam Matthew Wood.(photo provided by Winnipeg police)
The Winnipeg police are asking for the public's help in finding four men as part of a project that raided numerous Hells Angels' homes and businesses in March.
Project Flatlined is a Winnipeg police operation that began in September 2011 and has focused on organized crime in the city, specifically the Hells Angels and the Redlined puppet club.
Between Sept. 3, 2011 and Feb. 29, 2012 numerous search warrants were executed in connection with Project Flatlined resulting in 23 arrests, Winnipeg police said.
Last month on March 16 more than 150 officers took part in a series of takedowns across Winnipeg directed at the Hells Angels.
One of their targets was the Manitoba Hells Angels President, 41-year-old Dale Jason Sweeney. In total, 11 people were arrested including three full-patch Hells Angels and eight of their associates.
Now police are asking for the public's help in locating four Winnipeg men with outstanding arrest warrants.
Adam Matthew Wood is facing numerous charges including trafficking cocaine and participating in a criminal organization. Wood is 34 years old.
Shawn Justin Colbert, 30, is facing numerous charges including conspiracy to commit an indictable offence and participating in a criminal organization.
Jesse Richard Thomas, 27, and Jared James Irving, 26, are facing charges of participating in a criminal organization.
Officers' attempts to locate all four of the men have been unsuccessful, Winnipeg police said.
Anyone with information is asked to call investigators at 986-3411 or Crime Stoppers at 786-8477.
|Posted On 03:54 by Qleap||0 comments|
THE State Government has been asked to close a legal loophole that allowed 10 Hells Angels to escape charges. Director of Public Prosecutions Stephen Pallaras, QC, has confirmed he met Attorney-General John Rau to discuss a flaw in the Criminal Law Consolidation Act relating to charges of riot, affray and violent disorder, after the dramatic development in the high-profile bikie case this month. Aggravated riot charges were dropped on March 1 against all Hells Angels members involved in the city nightclub brawl in Hindley St last May. Eleven members and associates of the Finks also involved in the brawl are still facing similar charges. No explanation was given why the prosecution withdrew charges against the Hells Angels members. The Sunday Mail has since learnt they were dropped because the Hells Angels could have argued they acted in self-defence after they were set upon by Finks bikies, which would have seen the case against them fail. RELATED COVERAGE DPP fury as bikie violence spreads The Australian, 31 Jan 2012 RAH opens after package alert Herald Sun, 31 Jan 2012 Bikie boss found guilty of murder Foundation, 2 Nov 2011 Brawl death: Bikie boss found guilty of murder Adelaide Now, 2 Nov 2011 Hells Angels, Finks bikies on riot charges Adelaide Now, 4 Oct 2011 CCTV footage of the club brawl allegedly shows the Finks were the aggressors, even though both gangs continued fighting for some time. Mr Pallaras said he met Mr Rau because he wanted to "alert him to my concerns" and to "try and solve the problem before it occurs again". "I can't talk about the specifics of the meeting but ... I discussed with him some views I had on how we might avoid similar results in future cases," he said. Although he would not comment on the dropping of the Hells Angels charges as the matter is still before court, Mr Pallaras said: "Legally, it was clear that we had to do it. "It was difficult in a sense that it highlighted the fact we may have problems in the future with the legislation as it currently stands. The solution is not easy." Mr Rau confirmed Mr Pallaras raised "serious concerns" with him at the effectiveness of the legislation. "I want to make sure that offenders who engage in this sort of behaviour are able to be prosecuted," he said. "I am anticipating advice from the DPP about ways to tighten the law. Any recommendations will be taken to Cabinet level for consideration." It is understood any amendments to the Act will revolve around the definition of self-defence. The Government amended the Criminal Law Consolidation Act in 2010 to introduce new offences of riot, affray and violent disorder as part of its package of legislation to combat bikie gangs. The offence of riot carries a maximum penalty of seven years' jail and the aggravated offence carries a maximum 10-year term. Affray carries a maximum three-year term, aggravated affray five years and violent disorder two years or a $10,000 fine. Senior police declined to comment on the loophole in the Act, but it is known SAPOL has been asked to write a submission on any changes that may be needed to the legislation following discussions with the DPP. Rank-and-file detectives involved in policing bikies are bewildered at the loophole. "We were initially astounded when the charges were withdrawn," a senior detective said. "Often we may not know who started an altercation involving gang members and only find out after they have been charged, so it presents a unique problem that needs to be sorted out."
|Posted On 03:53 by Qleap||0 comments|
|Posted On 13:23 by Qleap||0 comments|
Allan "Dog" Hunter, 33, of Chicago, was present during the March 6, 2011, shooting death of Javell T. Thornton, 32, also of Chicago, at 126 South Main St. according to a federal indictment. As part of his plea, Hunter, a member of the Wheels of Soul outlaw motorcycle gang, admitted Thursday in federal court that he conspired with other members of the gang to dispose of several firearms after the shooting. WOS was in Marion for a meeting at a private motorcycle club. In the early morning hours of March 6, a fight at the gang's after-hours party spilled onto the sidewalk on South Main Street. When the dust settled, three men were injured with stab and gunshot wounds, and Thornton was dead. The federal indictment states that Anthony R. Robinson shot three victims in the back as they fled the party, killing Thornton and seriously injuring another. Hunter reportedly fired a handgun indiscriminately into the crowd while wearing a bulletproof vest. Robinson has been indicted on one count of murder in aid of racketeering activity and one count of attempt to commit murder in aid of racketeering, along with other federal charges for murder and racketeering activities in other states, according to the federal indictment. Eighteen members of the WOS were indicted on federal charges June 9, 2011. One member allegedly stabbed another person in the head during a fight at a Chicago motorcycle club, then shot another in the stomach. The indictment says gang members are required to carry weapons - mostly guns, but also hammers, knives and other weapons.
|Posted On 07:22 by Qleap||0 comments|
A couple of blatant scofflaws were given short shrift by police Sunday afternoon after a less than routine stop over a traffic violation. A motorcyclist flying the colours of a well-known outlaw biker gang drew police attention – not by bragging about his criminal affiliation with a vest bearing a “striker” emblem, but by speeding down Victoria Street at 95 kilometres per hour on Victoria Street. After doling out a $368 fine, three demerit points and towing the bike, police turned their attention to the biker’s friend who had come to pick up the stranded man. And again, it wasn’t the second man’s vest and striker emblem that turned police’s head, but the invalid insurance on his truck. So another fine was handed out – this one for $598 – along with a ticket for driving without insurance. Police will not name the biker gang in question since they don’t want to give the criminals notoriety, according to Staff Sgt. Grant Learned. However, he said presence of two gang members in town does not indicate that organized crime has gained a toehold in Kamloops. “The Hell’s Angels and Rock Machine are constantly trying to get established in every community,” said Learned. “But there is no chapter or clubhouse in Kamloops.” He said what’s more likely is a few individuals from an independent motorcycle group on the North Shore forged alliances with one of the rival outlaw gangs. “It’s not a strong presence here, but individuals here are trying to work up in the criminal organizations.” And although both men in Sunday’s incident were stopped for blatant violation of traffic laws, anyone clearly displaying affiliations with criminal gangs will attract unwanted police attention no matter what they’re up to, said Learned. “If anyone is flying those colours in this or any other community, they can expect to be checked out for who they are and what they’re doing in the community.” A third, law-abiding driver subsequently attended and gave the two men a ride.
|Posted On 05:17 by Qleap||0 comments|
POLICE investigating the Hells Angels have launched a new taskforce amid fears a full-blown bikie war will explode in Kings Cross. The Sunday Telegraph can reveal the operation, code-named Strike Force Cheviot, was set up after 40 to 50 members of the Hells Angels descended on the red-light district last month. Police believe the "unprecedented" act may have been designed to send a message to rival bikie group Nomads, which have long controlled security in the area. Detective Superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis, commander of the NSW Gangs Squad, said police had been watching the situation closely since the February 5 incident. "Yes, we are aware and monitoring the situation with what happened at Kings Cross that night with the Hells Angels", Mr Katsogiannis told The Sunday Telegraph. "It was an unprecedented act from the Hells Angels and that's why it's important the Gangs Squad involved ourselves from the beginning. "Safety of the community is our top priority and we will not be allowing any OMCGs (outlaw motorcycle gangs) to carry on with that type of behaviour". Police are investigating a possible outbreak of violence between the Nomads and the Hells Angels, who have been on an expansion and recruitment drive for months around Sydney. It is one of several lines of inquiry being probed by Cheviot detectives. They are also looking at a credible allegation that Hells Angels members went to Kings Cross to confront a member of the Nomads clan who works in the area. The man, who for legal reasons cannot be named, was formerly a member of the Hells Angels but "patched over" several months ago. Since then he has been performing unofficial security tasks for nightclub premises in Kings Cross, including venues aligned with local identity John Ibrahim. Law enforcement sources said when the Hells Angels descended on the nightspot they arranged themselves across the road from a club where the man was believed to be working, and demanded he come outside. "That forms part of several lines of inquiry we are looking at," Mr Katsogiannis said, adding that officers from Strike Force Raptor were patrolling Kings Cross on the night of the incident and quelled the situation. "If they (Raptor police) didn't intervene at the time, it could have been a lot worse". Police have connected the Nomads member with some of the recent shootings across southwestern Sydney, all of which are under investigation. In November, The Sunday Telegraph revealed the individual was the target of a drive-by attack at an Oporto restaurant in Merrylands, which occurred two days after he was released from custody. Mr Katsogiannis said Strike Force Cheviot officers, would continue weekend patrols of Kings Cross to prevent any outbreaks of violence for "as long as it takes".
|Posted On 14:40 by Qleap||0 comments|
Ending a four-month-long manhunt, San Jose police arrested -- without incident -- a Hells Angel wanted for the murder of a fellow Angel in the middle of a funeral. The 38-year-old suspect, Steve Ruiz, is suspected of shooting fellow Angel Steve Tausan to death Oct. 15 at San Jose's Oak Hill Cemetery. Ruiz, who had been on the run for months, was caught Saturday evening at a motel in Fremont. "We're relieved to have him off the streets," said Sgt. Jason Dwyer during a Sunday news conference at police headquarters. "This was a difficult case for investigators to solve." Ruiz's arrest is the latest chapter in a series of bizarre and violent chain-reaction episodes involving the Hells Angels, a legendary outlaw motorcycle gang originally formed in 1948 in Fontana. In September, San Jose Hells Angels President Jeff "Jethro" Pettigrew was shot and killed in a Nevada casino, allegedly by a member of the rival Vagos motorcycle gang. Pettigrew and Tausan were close friends. More than 3,000 members of various motorcycle clubs gathered in October at Oak Hill to pay their respects to Pettigrew. Sources have said a fistfight erupted between Tausan and Ruiz, and during the fight, Ruiz drew a handgun, shot Tausan and fled during the melee that ensued. Tausan was a Hells Angels legend, an ex-boxer who beat a man to death at the Pink Poodle strip club in 1997, only to have a jury acquit him after he claimed self-defense. His funeral Advertisement also was held at Oak Hill. For months, San Jose police have been trying to find Ruiz. Dwyer said that Ruiz had been moving around from place to place and was known by authorities to have stayed briefly in the Stockton and Sacramento areas. A fresh tip to detectives indicated that Ruiz was in Fremont, and more than a dozen officers moved quickly Saturday to surround the Days Inn motel at 46101 Warm Springs Blvd. Ruiz, who was believed to be armed and dangerous, apparently was alone and surrendered to police about 7:30 p.m. without incident. He spoke to detectives and was booked at the Santa Clara County main jail. "We don't believe that he'd been there for very long," said Dwyer of the Fremont motel. "We had a small window of opportunity to capture him. The fact that he surrendered peacefully was fortunate." San Jose police stressed that the Hells Angel murder, which has received national publicity, was one of 39 homicides in San Jose last year and that detectives worked the case like any other, putting in long hours as they juggled a heavy caseload. They also said that Ruiz had a lot of help eluding law enforcement in the four months since the funeral. "If someone helped him evade capture, we're going to come after them," Dwyer said.
|Posted On 21:56 by Qleap||0 comments|
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federal jury found Christopher Bryan Ablett, a/k/a “Stoney,” a member of the Modesto Chapter of the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang, guilty of all four felonies with which he was charged including murder in aid of racketeering, assault with a deadly weapon in aid of racketeering, using a firearm during a crime of violence, and using a firearm causing murder during a crime of violence, United States Attorney Melinda Haag announced. The charges stemmed from the defendant’s gang-related murder of Mark “Papa” Guardado, the president of the San Francisco Chapter of the Hells Angels, on September 2, 2008, at 24th Street and Treat Avenue in the Mission District of San Francisco. Evidence at trial showed that Ablett traveled to San Francisco to visit a friend. He was armed with a foot-long military knife and a .357 magnum revolver. Ablett brought with him a Mongols full-patch vest and t-shirt that only a full member of the Mongols is allowed to wear. According to testimony from Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF) gang expert Special Agent John Ciccone, and former Mongols undercover ATF Special Agent Darrin Kozlowski who infiltrated the gang, the Mongols are an organized criminal motorcycle gang whose primary rival is the Hells Angels motorcycle gang. When word traveled to Guardado that the defendant was wearing a Mongols patch shirt in a bar in the Mission, Guardado went to the street outside the bar and approached Ablett. A fight broke out during which Ablett stabbed Guardado four times and shot him twice, killing him. According to the testimony of FBI Special Agent Jacob Millspaugh, the case agent, the defendant’s phone records showed that he spent the next several hours calling people who were identified as members of the Mongols—showing that he was reaching out as part of the Mongols communication network. The jury rejected the defendant’s defenses of self-defense, defense of his friends, and heat of passion after the defendant took the stand and testified. The jury also found that the defendant murdered Guardado to maintain or increase his position in the Mongols gang, and that the Mongols engaged in racketeering activity. Ablett is scheduled to be sentenced on May 15, 2012. He faces a possible sentence of three terms of life in prison plus 10 mandatory consecutive years, a $1 million fine, and five years of supervised release. Specifically, for the charge of murder in aid of racketeering, in violation of 18 United StatesC. § 1959, Ablett faces a mandatory minimum sentence of life without parole. For the charge of assault with a deadly weapon in aid of racketeering, in violation of 18 United StatesC. § 1959, Ablett faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. For the charge of using a firearm during a crime of violence, in violation of 18 United StatesC. § 924(c), Ablett faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. And for the charge of using a firearm causing murder during a crime of violence, in violation of 18 United StatesC. § 924(j), Ablett faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the United States Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 United StatesC. § 3553. The case was prosecuted by former Assistant United States Attorney Christine Wong, Assistant United States Attorneys Kathryn Haun, Wilson Leung and William Frentzen, paralegal specialist Lili ArauzHaase, legal techs Marina Ponomarchuk, Daniel Charlier-Smith, and Ponly Tu, all of the Organized Crime Strike Force and Violent Crime Section of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, and the San Francisco Police Department.
|Posted On 01:01 by Qleap||0 comments|
Zumba Fitness is the only Latin-inspired dance-fitness program that blends red-hot international music, created by Grammy Award-winning producers, and contagious steps to form a "fitness-party" that is downright addictive. Since its inception in 2001, the Zumba program has grown to become the world's largest – and most successful – dance-fitness program with more than 12 million people of all shapes, sizes and ages taking weekly Zumba classes in over 110,000 locations across more than 125 countries.
|Posted On 00:57 by Qleap||0 comments|
On a rooftop parking lot, with temperatures in the chilly low 50s, a crowd of all ages shimmied and shook, sweated and smiled as DJ Francis played an eclectic mix of dance music. But this wasn't just another wild South Florida party. It was a special Zumba class for charity, led last month by the creator of the global craze, Alberto "Beto" Perez. The charismatic Colombian in cargo pants — who has become a rock star in the fitness world — climbed onto the roof of a Chevy minivan that doubled as a stage. He demonstrated salsa steps, the merengue march and many other Latin-inspired dance moves — all while also cuing the drummer and the bongo player. For an hour, 75 of his adoring fans — and even the minivan — moved to the beat. "Everybody loves it; everybody has fun," Perez said while posing for pictures with his Zumba faithful, some of whom had traveled from as far as Canada. Two days later, Perez flew to New York to appear on the TV morning show "Live! with Kelly." "You must be so rich by now," host Kelly Ripa gushed to Perez, 41. Perez's Zumba classes, with the motto "Ditch the Workout, Join the Party," were strictly a South Florida phenomenon 10 years ago. Today, Zumba Fitness has become the largest branded fitness program in the world, with about 12 million people taking Zumba classes weekly at 110,000 locations in at least 125 countries, according to company spokeswoman Allison Robins. The private company won't reveal information about the company's finances or its net worth. But at a time when most of the world is struggling economically, Zumba Fitness' empire appears to be flourishing. It is doing so on the strength of a growing army of certified instructors who spread the Zumba gospel to such distant outposts as Iceland, Papua New Guinea, Nepal and even Afghanistan — at the Kabul Community Center. Many fitness crazes have come and gone. Staying power is tough in the ever-evolving fitness industry. John Figarelli, founder of the National Fitness Hall of Fame Museum and author of "The History of Fitness: Fads, Gimmicks and Gadgets," said: "I think the owners of Zumba did a great job of getting it going from a business standpoint." Zumba Fitness does not charge gyms to carry its classes. Instead, it trains instructors and gives them the license and use of the trademark if they join the Zumba Instructor Network. "We're helping the instructors to become entrepreneurs and make a living out of it," said company co-founder Alberto Aghion. Exercise as a business It's a sound strategy, said Figarelli, whose book covers 100 years of working out, from 1900 to 2000. "Most group-exercise instructors will just go with the next popular class. But if Zumba is your business, instructors will stay with that." Ensuring instructors are successful has become the company's main mission. "We have three people who all they do is call up gyms all day and try to find instructors employment," said company co-founder Alberto Perlman. The company has made Zumba instructors easy to find, with a worldwide listing that includes all of their network instructors' classes regularly updated on the company's website. Instructors also receive new music and choreography about every two months. The music department now creates music just for Zumba classes, with original songs that include "Zumbalicious," "Que Te Mueve" and "Caipirinha," which was a No. 1 song in Israel. Zumba Fitness makes its money on its instructors academy, instructors courses, monthly fees from instructors in its network and on all its brand merchandise. The company has built its own line of hip, colorful clothing and footwear, workout DVDs, two video games, original music and a lifestyle magazine, Z-Life. This was not the business model when Zumba Fitness was founded in Aventura, Fla., in 2001 by the "three Albertos" — creator Perez and boyhood friends Perlman and Aghion, both entrepreneurs in their mid-20s and natives of Colombia. The trio's original plan was simple: produce VHS workout tapes of Perez's popular South Florida classes to sell around the country on infomercials. An inspired ad-lib Perez fell in love with dancing at age 7 by watching a VHS tape of the 1978 movie "Grease," starring John Travolta. At age 16, he was teaching aerobics classes for $1 an hour. One day, he forgot his prepared music. All he had in his backpack was a cassette tape of merengue and salsa music he'd recorded off the radio. His morning class was full of moms who had dropped their kids off at school. "I can't say, 'Hey sorry, I forgot my music,' " Perez said. "I say to the people, 'I have a new class I prepared for a long time.' It was not true. I improvised for one hour." The moms loved the dancing exercise. Perez turned it into a regular class in Cali. He soon moved to the Colombian capital of Bogotá, where he continued those classes and became a choreographer for Sony Music and Shakira. In 1999, Perez came to the United States for the first time. He pounded the pavement on South Beach, going from gym to gym. Nobody was interested in this new dance exercise class by a guy who couldn't speak English. On his fourth trip to Miami he landed a job at the swanky Williams Island Spa in a development where several Colombians lived. Some had even taken classes with him in Bogotá. Within a year, Perez was in demand, teaching 22 classes all over South Florida. At the same time, Perlman and Aghion were looking for a new business venture after the dot-com bubble burst, bringing down their Internet company, Spydre Labs, an incubator for Internet startups related to Latin America. Enter Raquel Perlman. While Alberto Perlman was telling his mom about how badly he was feeling for laying off people, she was telling him about how happy she was taking Perez's classes, where were then called Rumbacize. "You should meet Beto and maybe start a gym together," she told her son. "He's the talk of Aventura." Perlman watched a class and was reminded of people having fun at a nightclub, but without the drinking and pickup lines. "Beto, have you heard of Billy Blanks' Tae Bo? Why don't we do VHS tapes and sell them on television?" Perlman said he told Perez. In August 2001, they and Aghion founded Zumba Fitness. To create a demonstration video to show investors, the three stayed up all night laying down boards to create a dance floor on the beach outside a Sunny Isles hotel. About 200 of Perez's students paid $20 each for the class, raising an additional $4,000. When the infomercial began running on TV, people rang the call center in Ohio to buy the videos, and a few also asked how to become Zumba instructors. Those callers were forwarded to Zumba's office — at Aghion's home. After a few 2 a.m. wakeups, Aghion realized this was another business opportunity. Zumba Fitness also has greatly benefited from Internet advertising and social media. Many people discovered Zumba via YouTube videos. Zumba Fitness started a Facebook page about a year ago and now has more than 3 million fans. Zumba is mentioned every 11 seconds in social-media platforms, Robins said. It's not clear yet if Zumba will have a long shelf life or be added to the long list of exercise fads, said Walter R. Thompson, professor of exercise science at Georgia State University. He'll watch to see how it fares over the next few years in a worldwide survey that ranks fitness trends. "I hope it stays around," he said. "It's motivating a lot of people to exercise."
|Posted On 00:50 by Qleap||0 comments|
Dust clouds sway like ghosts dancing to an inaudible tune across miles of Moroccan dessert. I’m only 15 minutes south of Marrakech, but the soil’s already darkened to a deep, blood-clot red that clashes violently with the cobalt sky above. Spindly Argan trees feature goats that have clambered into the branches and nibble on the fruit (yes, really), a snapshot of surreal comedy against nature’s stark, beautiful reality. It’s my first up-close and personal foray into Morocco’s rural centre, despite having fallen head over heels for mad old Marrakech eight years beforehand. Rustic retreat: Lalla Abouch offers yoga courses set in the beautiful Moroccan countryside There’s something intoxicating about the swirling, jasmine-soaked souks, the thrill of losing yourself in the medina only to wind up on a rooftop drinking pomegranate martinis hours later. I’ve returned several times since to enjoy the city’s myriad hidden bars, supper clubs and late night lounges. But this time I want a different kind of escapism, one that’s less hedonism, more health. 'We’ve the perfect place', Rosena, the Irish founder of Moroccan concierge experts Boutique Souk, assures me before arranging a car to drive me the three-hour journey south into Morocco’s Berber country. Thirty miles south of the colonial port city of Essaouira, our jeep turns inland, swerves sharply at a junction and turns up an invisible, potholed dirt road through fields of carefully irrigated vegetable patches and chicken coops. A donkey brays ‘hello’ as I clamber out, the only contender to shatter the silent calm of our weekend lodgings. Named Lalla Abouch after ‘Lady Argan‘ and Morocco’s famous Argan tree, the guesthouse embodies what many ‘boutique’ lodgings strive for yet often fail to achieve. Chic and rustic, it proffers the perfect balance between comfort and style – the home from home I’ll never replicate no matter how many Elle Decoration subscriptions I sign up for. Taking the plunge: The refreshing pool is lined with plants and a traditional stone wall Beaming Lucreiza, the Italian who runs this hideaway, gives me a tour of the farm’s intimate selection of cosy rooms, all located around a bougainvillea-splashed courtyard, before ushering me onto the farm’s charming alfresco terrace for fresh mint and ginger tea. Terracotta pots trickle fresh water into a plunge pool overlooking acres of lovingly tended vegetable patches, whilst wild tortoises sunbathe lazily in the afternoon rays as kitchen hands gingerly navigate them whilst plucking robust courgettes for the evening meal. Food is a big draw at Lalla Abouch - so don’t go thinking this is yoga with all the normal detox-wheatgrass-deprivation tags. Lunch, though simple, is lip-smackingly good: home-plucked bitter leaves; creamy local goats cheese; cumin-crusted courgettes, caramelised carrots; a fuchsia pink beetroot dip; wholegrain couscous studded with ruby pomegranate seeds. Each bite radiates with energy and (forgive the hippy hyperbole) is offered up with love. Lucreiza beams as I eat. 'We like to give an alkaline, vegetarian diet during the retreats', she explains. 'It’s a good for body cleaning and rejuvenation.' I come away from the meal feeling more satiated than many of my finest dining experiences back in the UK. Unusual sights: Goats love to climb the Argan trees, while Lalla Abouch has plenty of quiet corners for relaxing Besides intensive, twice daily yoga and meditation sessions lasting two hours a go, Lalla Abouch offers a real (and rare) opportunity to totally unplug from daily life. As Lucreiza concedes, 'the natural elements are deep and strong', so the entire operation of the farm and its retreats has been designed to really embrace the local surrounds – and the produce found within it. Better still, my experience isn’t marred by the constant checking of Blackberry’s or broadband; connectivity here is slim to none. Sure, it’s a little disconcerting at first, but after several hours our entire party agrees we’re happy for the forced technology amnesty. With no one to tweet or CC, I instead sink into an indulgent afternoon of reading in the farm’s huge hammock, slung beneath the boughs of the Argan tree. I doze, stirring only when the attention seeking donkey’s comical eey-awww or Lucreiza’s quiet, smiling kitchen hands water the fragrant herb garden. I’ve done no yoga yet, but I can already see why Moroccan specialists Boutique Souk thought they’d 'struck gold' when stumbling upon the farm.
|Posted On 00:40 by Qleap||0 comments|
Members of Los Zeta cartel are among the 30 convicts who escaped from a prison in the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon, it was reported on Tuesday. Among the fugitives are former officials, ex corrupt police officers and drug distributors from that dangerous criminal gang, whose captures were considered important achievements by federal forces at the time. Bosses Oscar Manuel Bernal Soriano, known as La Araña, and Rogelio Chacha Quintanilla, aka El Yeyo, are included in that group, the newspaper Milenio reported. Also on the list are Hector Rousvel Huerta, known as El Chester, accused of collecting prohibited weapons and drug trafficking, and Francisco Javier Puente, known as El Choco, former chief of Los Zetas hired assassin group. The mass escape from the prison of Apodaca, near the city of Monterrey, took place after a fight in which 44 inmates were killed. The fight was caused to cover the prison break. Prison security agents are involved in those events, which occurred at daybreak on Sunday, according to the investigations.
|Posted On 00:38 by Qleap||0 comments|
Gunmen killed five taxi drivers Tuesday in the streets of the northern Mexican industrial city of Monterrey, the Nuevo Leon state Security Council said. “The attack happened at around 10:00 a.m. in the Solidaridad neighborhood” in the northern part of Monterrey, a council spokesman told Efe. Several men aboard an SUV opened fire on a taxi stand at a busy shopping center located at the intersection of Cabezada and Luis Donaldo Colosio avenues. The gunmen managed to get away, leaving the streets covered with bodies. The security forces cordoned off the area, with soldiers guarding the crime scene investigators sent to gather evidence. The shootings occurred just hours after three suspected Gulf cartel members – two men and a woman – were murdered at Monterrey’s Topo Chico prison by two killers from the rival Zetas drug cartel. On Sunday, Zetas gunmen massacred 44 Gulf cartel members imprisoned at the penitentiary in Apodaca, a city in the Monterrey metropolitan area, while 30 Zetas members escaped with the assistance of several guards. Monterrey and its suburbs have been battered by a wave of drug-related violence that has left about 2,500 people dead since March 2010. Los Zetas has been battling an alliance of the Gulf, Sinaloa and La Familia drug cartels, known as the Nueva Federacion, for control of the Monterrey metropolitan area and smuggling routes into the United States. Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, known as “El Lazca,” deserted from the Mexican army in 1999 and formed Los Zetas with three other soldiers, all members of an elite special operations unit, becoming the armed wing of the Gulf drug cartel. After several years on the payroll of the Gulf cartel, Los Zetas, considered Mexico’s most violent criminal organization, went into the drug business on their own account and now control several lucrative territories. Mexico’s drug war death toll stood at 47,515 from December 2006 to Sept. 30. The murder total has grown every year of President Felipe Calderon’s military offensive against the well-funded, heavily armed drug cartels. Unofficial tallies published in December by independent daily La Jornada put the death toll from Mexico’s drug war at more than 50,000
|Posted On 00:36 by Qleap||0 comments|
A total of 13 suspected members of the Los Zetas drug cartel were arrested in the western Mexican state of Jalisco, officials said. The suspects, two of whom are women, were detained Monday morning in Tlajomulco, a city located about 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) from Guadalajara, the capital of Jalisco, after several business owners complained about an extortion racket, the Public Safety Secretariat said. The group was recruited by a “Zetas boss,” known only as “Don Jose,” who took them to the city a few months ago to “execute some criminal activities,” Alfredo Vazquez, identified as the cell’s leader, told investigators. The cartel provided between 100,000 pesos and 150,000 pesos ($7,000 and $11,000) every two weeks to cover the payroll, Vazquez said. Seven of the suspects are from the central state of Guanajuato, four are from the northern state of Durango and two are from Jalisco, the secretariat said, adding that some of them have prior criminal records. State police seized an AR-15 assault rifle, five handguns and two SUVs with Durango tags in the raid, the secretariat said. Heriberto Lazcano Lazcano, known as “El Lazca,” deserted from the Mexican army in 1999 and formed Los Zetas with three other soldiers, all members of an elite special operations unit, becoming the armed wing of the Gulf drug cartel. After several years on the payroll of the Gulf cartel, Los Zetas, considered Mexico’s most violent criminal organization, went into the drug business on their own account and now control several lucrative territories. Los Zetas has been blamed for several massacres in recent years. The cartel was accused of being behind the Aug. 23, 2010, massacre of 72 migrants, the majority of them from Latin America, at a ranch outside San Fernando, a city in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas. Los Zetas has also been blamed for the massacre of 27 peasants in May at a ranch in Guatemala’s Peten province, which borders Mexico and Belize. Zetas gunmen set fire to the Casino Royale in Monterrey, the capital of Nuevo Leon, on Aug. 25, killing 52 gamblers and employees trapped inside, most of whom died of smoke inhalation.
|Posted On 00:30 by Qleap||0 comments|
CAMDEN police and special units have seized 7.5 kilograms of the drug ice estimated to be worth $1 million from a Narellan property. Officers executed search warrants on Tuesday, February 14. A Hells Angels member and a man said to be a gang associate were arrested and charged with knowingly taking part in the manufacture of a large commercial quantity of a prohibited drug. The two, a Narellan man, 36, and a Catherine Field man, 41, faced Campbelltown Court last week. A Narellan woman, 30, was charged with two counts of possessing a prohibited drug in relation to cannabis and amphetamines found at the Narellan property. She will appear in Camden Court on March 12. Detective Chief Inspector Andy Richmond said two sophisticated laboratories had been found. "The two clandestine laboratories shut down by police this week were sophisticated and capable of making large quantities of prohibited drugs [methylamphetamine]," Chief Inspector Richmond said. "Those drugs will no longer be making their way to local streets and causing harm to members of the community." Large quantities of chemicals were also found and members of the Drug Squad's chemical operation team dismantled the laboratories.
|Posted On 00:28 by Qleap||0 comments|
Mark Duclos, 48, of Fairbanks, Ala., had his sentencing moved to coincide with fellow Hells Angels club member George Caruso, 58, of Shirley, Mass. Duclos and Caruso were involved in a stabbing that took place during last year's Sturgis motorcycle rally. Duclos, who was found guilty of aggravated assault, was scheduled to be sentenced today, Feb. 21, though his sentencing was moved to March 5 at 10:45 a.m. along with Caruso. The pair were involved in a fight between the Hells Angels and the Mongols motorcycle club on Aug. 10, which resulted in a stabbing, sending a Mongols member and a Hells Angels member to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Aggravated assault is a class three felony and carries a maximum punishment of up to 15 years in prison and up to a $30,000 fine. Simple assault is a class one misdemeanor and carries a maximum punishment of up to one year in jail and up to a $2,000 fine.
|Posted On 00:24 by Qleap||0 comments|
A man found dead on a Halifax-area road Sunday night had a Hells Angels connection and was shot in the back of the head, thechronicleherald.ca has learned. Halifax RCMP identified James Alexander (Sandy) Lyle, 55, as the victim and have declared his death a homicide. It’s Halifax's second homicide this year. “He died of a gunshot wound and a weapon has been recovered,” Halifax RCMP spokeswoman Const. Tammy Lobb said Tuesday afternoon. “I’m not revealing where it was recovered because that’s part of the investigation." Lobb said police will analyze and trace the gun. Two separate sources told thechronicleherald.ca that Lyle was shot in the back of the head. Lobb would not talk about any possible motive or suspects in the killing. She said no arrests had been made by late Tuesday afternoon. Lyle had a long history of drug dealing and was arrested in a major operation against the now-defunct Halifax chapter of the Hells Angels. That Dec. 4, 2001 sweep, called Operation Hammer, took in half of the membership of the Halifax chapter, which ended up closing as a result. About 200 police officers took part in the raid, in which police stormed the gang’s Dutch Village Road clubhouse, plus other sites in Halifax, Kings County, Bible Hill and Sherbrooke, Que. They arrested a trio of Hells Angels – Clay Gordon MacRae, Jeffrey Albert Lynds and Arthur Daine Harrie – along with Lyle, well-known criminal James Melvin Sr., and 15 others. Lyle was charged with trafficking marijuana. Harrie was arrested in Quebec on the day of that raid. Lynds was found dead of an apparent suicide in his Montreal jail cell last month. He was awaiting trial for two murders in that province in 2010. In March 1991, Lyle received a five-year sentence – his only federal stint - for running a cocaine operation from his Maple Street home with his younger brother Martin Ellsworth Lyle. Lyle was also found guilty of possessing a loaded .45 calibre handgun. Martin Lyle was given three years. Around 10:45 p.m. on Sunday, a passing motorist saw a body on the side of Montague Road in Montague Gold Mines and called police. Emergency Health Services were called to the scene and tried unsuccessfully to revive the victim, Lobb said. On Monday morning, a number of police investigators went to a home on Dartmouth’s Cannon Terrace and confirmed it was connected to the suspicious death. Police were still at the home Tuesday. Provincial records name James Lyle and Carla Balsor as the home’s owners. Officers were seen working inside a garage at 14 Cannon Terrace and later removed a Honda SUV from the scene. Lobb said there were no drugs in the home, which has been searched since the killing. Neighbours said the home has a surprising amount of security, which includes surveillance cameras, frosted windows and an intercom at the front door. Lyle and Balsor used to live on nearby Sea King Drive, but sold that house in 2007. Balsor is the owner of the Rodeo Lounge and Restaurant in Burnside. The Mounties are asking anyone who may have seen suspicious activity in Montague Gold Mines or around the house on Cannon Terrace on Sunday to contact them. Lobb would not say if Lyle was at his home before he was found on Montague Road.
|Posted On 14:46 by Qleap||0 comments|
Federal narcotics agents busted a heroin operation at a Bronx auto shop this month, severing a million dollar supply chain that stretched to Long Island, court records indicate. They raided Mobile Creations, a luxury car customizing shop, on Feb. 7 after nabbing a Suffolk County drug dealer attempting to sell 68 grams of heroin. The dealer ratted out his supplier, who gave up his source at Mobile, at 1631 Stillwell Ave. near Pelham Parkway in Morris Park, according to a complaint filed in Brooklyn Federal Court. The drug task force officers had the supplier set up a meet with James Gainer, who allegedly operated out of the Bronx shop, and arrested the suspect with 500 grams of heroin he planned to sell for $28,500, according to the complaint. They also snatched Mobile Creations manager Robert Bishun after finding 1.5 kilograms of cocaine and 250 grams of heroin hidden in a vehicle at the shop, and $40,000 in cash concealed in a Mercedes-Benz sedan registered to Bishun. The officers seized a .40 caliber handgun, loose ammunition and $30,000 cash from the shop’s office, along with pay-and-owe sheets detailing millions of dollars in narcotics transactions. The complaint charges both men with drug dealing and possession and Bishun with possessing a firearm linked to trafficking. Four drug grinders and a scale were also found in the shop, according to the complaint. The Suffolk County supplier told the agents he met Gainer at Mobile Creations to buy at least 100 grams of heroin a week. Repair shops and auto parts stores line Stillwell Ave., a quiet street that abuts Metro-North Railroad tracks. The facade of Mobile Creations sports colorful signs featuring Bentleys, Range Rovers and other luxury cars. "I just work here 10-6," said Mike James, a mechanic at Mobile Creations, on Monday. "This is a legit shop." "The shop has been around for over 10 years and they do high-end customization of cars," said Javier Solano, Bishun’s lawyer. "They do Lamborghini-style doors. They do $25,000 rims, $30,000 audio systems." Bishun and Gainer are being held without bail and have not been indicted yet, said Solano. Gainer’s lawyer, Lawrence DiGiansante, declined to comment.
|Posted On 14:37 by Qleap||0 comments|
Zoran Kisacanin, 25, was found not guilty of murder or manslaughter last November, but guilty of riot and affray in relation to the March 2009 brawl. Anthony Zervas, the brother of Hells Angel member Peter Zervas, was killed during the violence involving the rival motorcycle gangs. Justice Robert Allan Hulme jailed Kisacanin in the NSW Supreme Court for at least three years two months and a maximum of five years and three months. "The Comancheros and Hells Angels motorcycle gangs were, in effect, at war with each other," the judge said. "The offender was a nominee member of the Comancheros. "He was subject to its strict rules requiring loyalty and prohibiting cowardice." The judge said Kisacanin played a role in the fighting - which generally involved wrestling, punching and kicking - and also picked up a bollard. But there was no evidence as to what he did with it. The judge said the participants in the riot were prepared to "engage in wanton and significant violence regardless of the presence of many airline and airport staff and members of the public". In an affidavit, Kisacanin said he became involved with the Comancheros after meeting members at a local gym. He said that the gang "sounded like good fun hanging out with the guys and being part of a brotherhood". As his mother and brother were in Serbia, his only family in Australia was his father and he kept his involvement secret from him. The judge noted Kisacanin has been housed with his Comanchero colleagues in jail, saying he "had no idea what to do if (he) was alone in prison". After promising to cease association with the club on his release, his father has agreed to let him live and work with him in a painting business. Comanchero national president Mick Hawi is yet to be sentenced after being found guilty of murder, while another club member is to be sentenced for manslaughter in March. Eight other Comancheros and two Hells Angels members have already been sentenced for their roles in the brawl.
|Posted On 14:35 by Qleap||0 comments|
Police allege they have DNA evidence linking a prospective member of the Hells Angels to a home invasion during which an 11-year-old boy was shot at Semaphore in Adelaide. The man has been refused bail in the Magistrates Court. Former Fink Mark Sandery was enraged when his son was shot in their Military Road home last September. The boy was sleeping with his brother in a bedroom when the shots were fired, wounding him twice in the left leg. Five months later, Arron Cluse, 21, has been charged and faced court over the home invasion. Police have told the court they found Cluse's DNA on a hammer used to smash windows at the scene. Arron Cluse has been refused bail They also claim to have found two balaclavas at Cluse's house and glass fragments from the windows. The prosecutor has also revealed Cluse's now-former home was riddled by 14 gunshots last December, then set alight a month later. Fearing for his safety, Cluse fled interstate to stay with family. Defence lawyer Aaron Almeida has told the court Cluse will plead not guilty and there is no motive or evidence to link him to the shooting. Magistrate Robert Harrup refused bail, ruling the charges were too serious and the accused was a flight risk, a judgment that distressed his family and friends.
|Posted On 08:20 by Qleap||0 comments|
Police say they have charged a senior member of the Hells Angels bikie gang over the discovery of two illegal drug laboratories earlier this week. The 33-year-old man was arrested with an alleged Hells Angels associate on Wednesday afternoon at an apartment block at North Ryde, in Sydney's north-west. Police say they found drugs and a loaded handgun at the unit. The apartment was raided by officers investigating the discovery of two methylamphetamine labs on Tuesday in the city's south-west at Catherine Field and Narellan. Specialists from the Drug Squad's Chemical Operations Team are still working to dismantle the equipment and chemicals used in the manufacture of ice. Both men arrested yesterday have been charged with drug manufacture and other drug offences, while one has been charged over the pistol. Two other men who were arrested at the lab sites on Tuesday, aged 36 and 41, remain before the courts.
|Posted On 16:42 by Qleap||0 comments|
Using a paid police informant was one tactic employed in a recent RCMP-Winnipeg police sweep of the drug underworld — continuing a scheme used by police in similar high-level crime probes in the recent past. An undercover agent is to be paid in the range of $500,000 for his or her role in Project Deplete, a justice source confirmed Monday. The organized crime investigation, details of which were revealed last Friday, remains ongoing with two suspects remaining at large. The latest sweep saw charges laid against people police accuse of being major players in the city’s drug trade. Some have gang associations, others are more “independent,” police said. Among those arrested were former Hells Angel William ‘Billy’ Bowden and Joshua Lyons, who was convicted in Project Defence, a separate organized crime sting conducted in 2006. As well, justice officials have authorized the use of direct criminal indictments against suspects in the latest case. The bulk of those arrested so far made an initial appearance in the Court of Queen’s Bench Monday. The use of direct indictments means preliminary hearings meant to test the Crown’s evidence are bypassed. Direct indictments were also used in a 2009 crackdown into the Hells Angels-associated Zig Zag Crew gang code-named Project Divide. In that case, police paid former Zig-Zag member Michael Satsatin hundreds of thousands of dollars to inform on the criminal activities of other members. Lawyers appearing for suspects in Project Deplete Monday were given some preliminary disclosure and portable computer hard drives containing police evidence. No evidence was put forward by prosecutors on the record in court. The lawyer for Christopher Murrell, 36, said he plans to make a bail application prior to Mar. 14 — the date Justice Brenda Keyser remanded the cases to. Jay Prober refused comment on the specifics or details of the investigation or allegations against Murrell, who is accused of cocaine-trafficking. He did state he felt the use of direct indictments was unfair to accused people. If a paid informant was used, Prober speculated, it wouldn’t be uncommon for the Crown to use the legal tactic to ensure witness safety. “If there’s an agent involved, they inevitably use direct indictments because they don’t want to bring the agent out more often than necessary,” Prober said. Nearly seven kilograms of cocaine, almost half a kilo of crack, more than 9,800 ecstasy tablets, a kilo of MDMA and large quantities of methamphetamine, oxycodone and marijuana were seized during Project Deplete, which started in August 2011. Police estimate the total street value of the drugs seized at about $1 million. FOUR MORE ARRESTS Four more arrests were made as part of project deplete. Kareem Martin, 31, Dane Sawatzky, 27, Mark Beitz, 31, Dalton Miller, 21 were all taken into custody since the first arrests were made on Friday. Warrants for the arrest of two individuals are still out. Elmer John Deato, 26 is wanted for trafficking cocaine while David Thomas, 29 is wanted for weapons trafficking, among other charges.