May 30th, 2024

Three charged in drug bust make court appearance

By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on April 26, 2024.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

Three men facing drug charges in relation to a police bust earlier this year had their matters addressed briefly Thursday in Lethbridge court of justice.
Zachary Tracyn Bottle of Fort Macleod, Marty Lee Fransen of Lethbridge and Charles Edward Sitek of Calgary, were arrested in February following an investigation by Lethbridge police and Alberta sheriffs, and during which they observed activity consistent with drug trafficking.
A man was arrested Feb. 1 following a targeted traffic stop and police reportedly seized 162 grams of fentanyl, seven grams of methamphetamine and nearly eight grams of cocaine, as well as $300 cash from the proceeds of crime.
Police found a second vehicle in a southside parking lot and arrested three more men, and seized 30 narcotic pills, nearly 29 grams of cocaine, 12 grams of fentanyl, 67 grams of methamphetamine and buffing agent, along with $1,020 cash.
Police later searched a hotel room and found nearly 616 grams of cocaine, 18 grams of fentanyl, drug paraphernalia and about $28,000 cash. The total street value of all the drugs seized is estimated to be more than $100,000.
Fransen pleaded not guilty on March 28 to three counts of drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of the proceeds of crime, and Calgary Lawyer Kirsten Lancee said a pretrial conference would be scheduled.
During Thursday’s court hearing, however, she simply asked that some of his previous release conditions be amended to allow him time to attend church with his surety and do some shopping once a week. His matter was then adjourned to May 30.
Bottle, who faces four counts of drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of the proceeds of crime, was also in court March 28, where his lawyer told court Bottle had applied to drug treatment court. But on Thursday Bottle said he had hired a new lawyer and his matter was adjourned to May 2.
Sitek is charged with two counts of drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of the proceeds of crime. His lawyer pleaded not guilty on his behalf Thursday and was granted an amendment of Sitek’s release conditions from 24-hour house arrest to curfew between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. every day. His matters return to court May 23.
A fourth accused, Edward Alexander Goodrich, 53, of Granum, who was not in court Thursday is charged with four counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of the proceeds of crime. His next court appearance is set for May 9.

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