To arrest Alessandro Lisi, Toronto Police used an array of investigative techniques that evolved over time:
Intelligence databases (May-October):
Police ran the names of Mr. Lisi and his associates through the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC, which holds criminal records) and several other police databases such as eCOPS (incident logs), IntelliBook (photographs) and CIPS (court activity).
Physical surveillance (June-October):
Toronto Police used both stationary (or “static”) and vehicle-based (“mobile”) surveillance teams to keep tabs on Mr. Lisi. Police say he suspected he was being watched and often engaged in “counter-surveillance.”
Aerial surveillance (June 25-Sept. 5):
Police intermittently used a plane to keep tabs on Mr. Lisi, but stopped after residents of Etobicoke began to complain that it was noisy.
Phone-record production order (obtained June 25):
Justice David Cole gave Toronto Police an authorization to obtain Mr. Lisi’s recent phone records from Rogers Communications. Authorities can compel such records with less evidence than is needed for a wiretapping warrant. The records revealed Mr. Lisi was in daily communication with Mayor Rob Ford.
Pole camera (installed July 18):
Police placed a closed-circuit camera outside Mr. Lisi’s house in Etobicoke to better keep tabs on him. They also later persuaded gas stations to let them look at security camera footage showing Mr. Lisi’s visits.
Surreptitious entry warrants (obtained Aug. 22, 30 and Sept. 5):
Justice Cole issued “general warrants” allowing police to “surreptitiously” enter properties and vehicles associated with Mr. Lisi. Police were given powers to compel Toyota, General Motors and Land Rover to cut keys, if necessary.
Tracking and “pinging” (warrant obtained Aug. 6-8):
Police secured the capacity to track Mr. Lisi’s mobile phone and use a “dialled number recorder” on it. Police also installed a GPS tracking device on his 2006 Range Rover. “Pinging” these devices allowed police to see where Mr. Lisi was at most times.
GM OnStar records (checked on Aug. 8):
Some GM vehicles are equipped with an onboard communications system known as “OnStar.” Having logged 56 calls between Mr. Lisi and an OnStar number, police called the company to figure trace it. They learned it belonged to Mayor Ford’s Cadillac Escalade.
Undercover officer (starting Aug. 23):
A detective-constable with the drug squad was enlisted to get close to the proprietor of a drycleaning business after police started to suspect Mr. Lisi moved drugs through it.
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