Montreal police arrest five suspects in armoured-car heists dating back to 1999
MONTREAL -- Five men belonging to a ring that was allegedly involved in several armoured-car heists were arrested Tuesday, Montreal police said.
Vincent Rozon, commander of the department's major crimes unit, believes the arrests will put an end to the recent spate of violent armoured-car robberies in the Montreal area.
The five suspects aged between 47 and 64 allegedly robbed five vehicles between 2011 and 2015 and unsuccessfully tried to take a sixth in an aborted attempted in 2014.
Police say they believe the men were also responsible for robbing an armoured car in 1999 outside a Montreal-area shopping centre.
"This group of five individuals was very organized," Rozon said.
Police say Walter Butt, 54, Paul Thomas Bryntwick, 64, David Stachula, 47, Serge Fournier, 64, and Gary Marsden, 63, are to be arraigned Wednesday on various charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy, kidnapping, possession of stolen goods and break and enter.
The men had been the subject of Canada-wide arrest warrants.
Three arrests occurred in Montreal, with one man captured in Ottawa and another in the Toronto area.
Two or three of the suspects took part in each heist, police said. The men allegedly hid near banks and waited for the armoured cars to appear.
"The men ambushed the guard as soon as (he or she) exited the bank with sacks of money," Rozon said, adding each heist was allegedly committed with guns and sometimes pepper spray.
Rozon said police believe the men were allegedly planning another such robbery in the near future.
Montreal police headed the investigation, which lasted about a year, and were helped by colleagues in nearby Longueuil and Ottawa as well as by Quebec provincial police and Peel regional police.