|Montreal police cracked down on tow truck companies in Montreal, Laval, Longueuil and Chateauguay. Police said they arrested 18 people after carrying out 23 search warrants. They are expected to be charged with crimes including theft, fraud and extortion.|
Officers said the companies involved, including Remorquage Taxi Montreal, were illegally towing vehicles on a massive scale. Some owners and tow-truck drivers were arrested. One of the people arrested is connected to the Hells Angels, said Cmdr. Nicodemo Milano of the Montreal police.
|Those charged are accused of illegally towing cars from shopping centres and hospital parking lots and demanding cash payments from motorists before their cars were returned. |
Police say that more than 200 motorists were victims of the theft, fraud and extortion which allegedly occurred between 2014 and 2016.
Police seized seven firearms.
|Police said that tow-truck operators would steal vehicles from parking lots while the owners were shopping. Before towing the car away, they would post a yellow sign on a lamp post or building with the company’s name and phone number. When the motorist would call the number, an employee would return to the scene and demand a cash payment.|
Some of the car owners were threatened to make sure they would pay.
|The towing company had been warned by Quebec's consumer protection office multiple times to stop using intimidation and threats. CBC News looked into Remorquage A9's ownership and management. Gianpietro Tiberio is a consultant, according to his lawyer. Tiberio was named at the Charbonneau commission into organized crime. RCMP linked him to the Rizzuto crime family.|
His lawyer, Franco Schiro, said Remorquage A9 is one of approximately five companies that operates in private parking lots in the city. No one else from the company agreed to speak.
Killers Kyle Gabriel, Terrell Lloyd Smith, Carey Isaac Regis
|In May 2012 Franco Schiro represented three men convicted of taking part in a brazen shooting in Old Montreal that left two men dead and two others injured. |
Kyle Gabriel, Carey Isaac Regis and Terrell Lloyd Smith were convicted. Police sources said that the motive involved retaliation for the murder of Nick “Ritz” Rizzuto, the elder son of Vito Rizzuto, who was fatally shot in December 2009.
Nick “Ritz” Rizzuto