File photo

Surrey RCMP seize $33,000 in stolen Canada Emergency Response Benefit cheques

A man and woman were arrested in Cloverdale

UPDATE: Police now say that after further investigation of the seized exhibits, it has been determined that the $33,000 in government issued cheques are not limited to Canada Emergency Response Benefits, but also included GST cheques, income tax refunds, as well as cheques issued by other organizations.

Police say two people were arrested after $33,000 in stolen Canada Emergency Response Benefit cheques was recovered by Surrey RCMP Officers with the Covid-19 Compliance and Enforcement Team.

Corporal Elenore Sturko said officers with the CCET were on patrol when they “made note of three suspicious vehicles associated to a residence in Cloverdale. The vehicles were allegedly displaying fake license plates and fake temporary operating permits.”

She said they tried to stop one of the vehicles on April 25, just after 9 p.m, as it pulled into the driveway but it was driven into the backyard in an attempt to evade police.

Sturko said the driver ran off but a female passenger was arrested “without incident.

“The driver, a man in his 30’s, was later arrested and taken into custody, after a brief foot pursuit.”

Sturko said police seized a “large quantity” of property stolen in the Lower Mainland, including $33,000 in Canada Emergency Response Benefit cheques.

“The arrested male suspect has been remanded to custody, and the female suspect has been released with an appearance notice for a later date. Charges have not been laid, however the investigation is on-going with police now processing the large quantity of seized exhibits.”

Inspector Wendy Mehat, acting community services officer, noted the CCET was created by the Surrey RCMP in collaboration with the City of Surrey “to address all aspects of public safety as it relates to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Not only are we looking out for safety aspects like social distancing, but keeping our eyes out for criminals who would seek to take advantage of opportunities presented by the pandemic,” she said.

Sturko noted that since the CCET was launched on March 26 it has conducted more than 12,000 “proactive checks of businesses, faith-based locations, event locations, recovery homes, parks and beaches in Surrey.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

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