On the day a trial was set to begin, a Port Coquitlam man admitted to possessing thousands of dollars of cash obtained through a multi-layered drug trafficking operation in Williams Lake in 2018.
Jeremy William Squires, 47, received three years probation with several conditions after entering the guilty plea Friday, Jan. 31 in Williams Lake Provincial Court.
Before imposing the probation conditions, which were a joint submission from Federal Crown and defence counsel, Judge Peter Whyte outlined the facts of the ‘dial-a-dope’ case.
Squires faced one count of possession of property obtained by crime.
The charge stemmed from an incident on April 7, 2018 in Williams Lake where Squires was stopped by police because he had been observed attending a residence under surveillance for possible drug trafficking.
Police had also observed him attend the same residence on March 24, 2018.
A search of the vehicle Squires was driving resulted in the seizure of $36,820 in Canadian currency, bound in $5,000-bundles and stashed behind the glove compartment and under a booster seat, and his arrest.
“That same day there was a search warrant executed at the residence and 282.9 grams of cocaine was seized as well as $10,725 in cash,” Whyte said.
On Jan. 2, 2019 the Williams Lake RCMP announced they had arrested seven people and laid several charges related to a multi-layered drug trafficking operation within the city over several months in 2018.
Squires was among those seven.
The others arrested and charged were Janine Emma Alphonse, Nolan Basil Harford, Justin Kyle Williams, Tye Christopher Jeff, Brian Mathew Dorsey and Brandon Kyle Wijma.
Squires has no previous criminal record.
He is a father to several young children, and his children ‘absolutely need him,’ Judge White said.
In 2016, Squires suffered an accident at work and has not been able to work in construction, and his involvement with the drug trade was an ‘event born out of desperation and ‘incredibly poor judgment,’ White added.
“I find it inconceivable that someone with five young children and two others, would take this sort of chance. My only hope for you, sir, is that is the last foray you have into criminality because the next stop would be your children taken into care and you going to jail.”
White said Squires was ‘not entitled’ to put his children through that trauma.
Under his probation conditions, Squires will be required to keep the peace, not come within a 25 kilometre radius of Williams Lake except go through on Highway 97 in a moving vehicle, he will be prohibited from possessing weapons for the duration of his probation, present himself to Probation Services and attend counselling as required.
He is also prohibited from having contact with Brian Mathew Dorsey and Brandon Kyle Wijma.