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The monetary calls for assorted from sufferer to sufferer, cops mentioned. (Representational)

Toronto:

A specialised Canadian police process pressure has arrested 5 individuals, together with two girls, of Indian origin for alleged extortion and firearm-related offences concentrating on the South Asian enterprise group within the Higher Toronto space.

The Peel Regional Police Extortion Investigative Job Power (EITF), with the assist of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), executed a search warrant ensuing within the arrest of 4 people, Gagan Ajit Singh, 23, Anmoldeep Singh, 23, Hashmeet Kaur, 25, Iyamjot Kaur, 21, and Arundeep Thind, 39, in accordance with a Peel Regional Police press launch on Wednesday.

Whereas Gagan Ajit Singh, Hashmeet Kaur and Iyamjot Kaur belong to the Brampton space, Anmoldeep Singh belongs to Mississauga. They’ve been charged with extortion, unauthorised possession of a firearm, unauthorised possession of prohibited or restricted weapon, and fraud, amongst different offences. The fifth suspect, Arundeep Thind, has no mounted tackle and has been charged with extortion.

The Peel Regional Police launched the EITF in December final 12 months in response to a wave of South Asian enterprise homeowners reporting threats of violence in opposition to them and their households in the event that they did not pay cash, in accordance with a CBC Information report.

Superintendent Shelley Thompson, who heads the unit, at a information convention on Wednesday, mentioned a complete of 24 fees have been laid in relation to the 29 extortion makes an attempt below investigation. 

Thompson mentioned in 9 of these situations, weapons have been fired at unoccupied companies, in accordance with the Toronto Star newspaper. Nevertheless, no accidents have been reported in reference to the shootings.

She additional mentioned the focused companies range however embrace eating places and bakeries, trucking and transport firms and impartial used automotive dealerships, all with South Asian homeowners. Explaining the modus operandi, Thompson mentioned the homeowners have been contacted both by cellphone, social media apps or video calling providers like WhatsApp.

The monetary calls for assorted from sufferer to sufferer, Thompson mentioned, however the perpetrators would at all times ask for both money or cash transfers of Canadian {dollars} or Indian rupees.

Comparable extortion makes an attempt are below investigation by legislation enforcement in Edmonton, the Decrease Mainland of British Columbia and several other jurisdictions within the US, she mentioned.

She mentioned the Peel Job Power is in contact with police providers in all of these areas, in addition to with the police businesses in India.

“There may be at present no data to counsel that the extortion makes an attempt in Peel are linked to wider Indian organised crime,” Thompson mentioned, including that such a chance is being actively investigated.

“One of many causes we’re doing this (information convention) is to place it on the market to the group that we’re on the lookout for data,” she mentioned. The investigators consider there are possible extra victims.

(Apart from the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is printed from a syndicated feed.)

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