At least one of the arrests made in Thursday’s series of raids in Toronto and Windsor was in relation to the slaying of Anthony Smith, Toronto Police announced Friday.
Police made the announcement in an update Friday morning on Project Traveller, the massive crackdown on a gang operating out of an apartment complex linked to the video that allegedly shows Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine.
A total of 43 people – 28 of them Thursday – were arrested in Toronto and Windsor, resulting in over 300 charges including murder, attempted murder, and possession of firearms, Staff Superintendent Jim Ramer said.
The death of Anthony Smith has been under intense scrutiny ever since an image of Mayor Ford with his arm around the young man was circulated widely by the alleged video’s owners as evidence of the mayor’s ties to the drug scene. Mr. Smith was gunned down in downtown Toronto at the end of March.
A second man who appears in the photo, 19-year-old Mohammed Khattak, was criminally charged after Thursday’s raids with participating in a criminal organization and trafficking in a substance passed off as marijuana.
Another man arrested in the raids who also appeared in the photo is Monir Kasim, according to a source with knowledge of the people in the photograph Mr. Ford has declined to answer questions about his relationship to three young men who appeared with him in the now-famous photograph taken at night outside a northwest Toronto home occupied by a childhood friend of the mayor.
The house is just a few hundred metres from the site of the raids – apartments that police believe are the geographic base for the Dixon Bloods. Superintendent Ramer would not comment Friday on whether there is a connection between that home and the Dixon Road raids.
He said that a total of 17 police agencies from across the province participated in Thursday’s raids. The raids were the culmination of a year-long investigation into the Dixon City Bloods, which police say wields control over a portion of Dixon Road.