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Four men charged after 11-month kidnapping investigation

Four men charged after 11-month kidnapping investigation

The Calgary Police Service (CPS) and their partners across Canada have located and charged four men involved in a violent kidnapping that occurred last year.

July 4, 2023 is the date the first call to Calgary emergency services was made by a man reporting that a family member had been kidnapped. The perpetrators also allegedly broke into the man’s home, located in the 500 block of Fourth Avenue NE, and allegedly assaulted him with a weapon and robbed him.

The perpetrators then contacted the man by phone and demanded a ransom in exchange for the family member they had kidnapped.

Video updates were sent to the families of the victims by the perpetrators, reiterating the ransom demands.

“They have no ties to traditional organised crime groups. These new groups are quite flexible, they operate and they change almost daily,” said Staff Sergeant Roland Stewart of CPS.

A day later the victim was released by the perpetrators and found by CPS at the centre with only minor injuries. Salah Aden was arrested and charged but released on bail, and subsequently failed to appear at his court hearing in November 2023.

“When our officers received this information they immediately took action and deployed a range of resources from across the service to safely locate and rescue the victim,” said Detective Inspector Shanon Scott, of the CPS’s Organised Crime and Offender Management Unit.

CPS subsequently launched an 11-month investigation into the incident. Through 44 warrants, multiple search warrants, production orders, and the seizure of 29 electronic devices, CPS and their partners identified three additional suspects believed to be involved in the kidnapping and home invasion. The remaining suspects were located in Toronto, Calgary, and Fort McMurray.

“Regardless of how much time has passed or where the suspects flee, investigators will devote resources to suppressing, investigating and enforcing any violent events that occur in our city,” Scott said.

Salah Aden was arrested again on May 8, 2024 by officers of the Ontario Provincial Police and the Toronto Police Service. His trial is set for July 16, 2024.

Aden’s allegations were as follows:

  • Robbery
  • Kidnapping
  • Two counts of failing to comply with a release order
  • Possession of a weapon without a permit
  • Possession of a restricted firearm
  • Attack with a weapon
  • Failure to appear in court

Mustafa Saeed was arrested by CPS on June 5, 2024 at his residence in the 3500 block of Eighth Avenue SW. His next court appearance is set for July 15, 2024.

Saeed’s allegations were as follows:

  • Robbery
  • Kidnapping
  • Extortion
  • Two counts of assault with a weapon
  • Unauthorized possession of a firearm
  • Aiming a firearm
  • Three counts of violating a release order

Brandon Power was arrested on June 10, 2024 by Fort McMurray RCMP. He was allegedly in possession of two handguns, ammunition and drugs. His trial is set for July 24, 2024.

Power’s costs were as follows:

  • Robbery
  • Forced confinement
  • Extortion
  • Five counts of unlawful possession of a firearm
  • Attack with a weapon
  • Breach of obligation
  • Unsafe storage of a firearm
  • Possession of a restricted firearm
  • Possession of proceeds of crime

Mohit Sandhu, the final suspect, was arrested on June 18, 2024, with the assistance of the Toronto Police Service. His trial is set for July 9, 2024.

Sandhu’s allegations were as follows:

  • Imposing a criminal offense
  • Robbery
  • Extortion

Kidnappings are not the most common crime in Calgary, but according to Statistics Canada, an average of 24 kidnappings were reported in Calgary between 2018 and 2022.

“We do see it, but it is a fairly rare occurrence,” said S/Sgt. Stewart.

CPS is asking Calgary residents to come forward with any information they may have about organized crime to assist with current and future investigations.

“Any piece of information, big or small, can have a significant impact on any investigation,” Scott said.