A Cuban immigrant named Nestor Di Francesca, in jail in Toronto on drug charges, aged 32 in 2000, at the centre of the alleged ring of sophisticated smugglers bringing drugs and other goods to Canada from FLorida. An alleged member of the ring was a manager at Pearson International Airport, Daniele Carlo Cappa of Maple. Investigators allege that after the drugs were sold, Cappa used his position to transfer the money out of Canada to the U.S., bypassing customs and security officers. Cappa worked in Terminal 3.
"What started out as an investigation targeting an individual uncovered a cross-function of activities from cocaine and hashish trafficking to money laundering and jewelry smuggling, he said. ``This was a sophisticated group in the sense that they had people in key positions that were able to help them facilitate their criminal activity." - RCMP Inspector Ron Allen
In the summer of 1998, the RCMP became aware of an FBI investigation into the alleged ring, Allen said.
``Their investigation resulted in a cocaine seizure of about 10 kilograms from a train in Washington. The train was on its way to Toronto from south Florida.
During the joint probe, the RCMP in Montreal seized 1,200 kilograms of hashish with an estimated street value of $12 million.
Also charged were Jose Rivera, 56, of Brampton, Nikolai Petrov Chilikoff, 25, of Toronto, John Kavaratzis, 38, of Toronto, Arthur Alajajian (co-operating government witness), 38, of Newmarket, and Maurice Catenacci (co-operating government witness)35, of Newmarket.
In pleading guilty in 2003 after being extradited tot he US to stand trial, Cappa would give the cash to the stool-pigeon Brett Matheys after smuggling it past security by using his security clearance pass. Matheys was an accomplice of Di Francesca. Di Francesca role was to sell the Coke to distributors once it arrived in Toronto. Cappa was Maurice Catenacci's brother-in-law.
The scheme began to fall apart on July 28, 1998, when Mark Matheys, the brother of Brench and one of the cocaine couriers, was arrested after his train stopped briefly at Union Station in Washington, D.C., and police discovered 50 kilograms of cocaine in his bags. Meanwhile, the RCMP in Toronto were already closing in on Francesca, who they said did not belong to a larger organized crime group. A two-year joint investigation between the RCMP and the FBI was then undertaken, which culminated on January 12, 2000 with the arrest of six people involved in the cash and cocaine smuggling operation.
Delmart Vreeland in jail
Panel 1: The story of Ron Taverner, Nestor Di Francesca and Paul Vreeland. When Hells Angels officially Ont. the existing competition was either murdered (Eddie Melo, Gaetano Panepinto, Joe Racco) or busted (Nestor Di Francesca, Samuel Knowles. With the full co-operation of the Ont. police forces in a short period of time (15 Mo.). Nestor Di Francesca was charged in a coke importing scheme at Pearson (Tor. Sun) Jan 13/00. While in the Don Jail he was charged in a sensational murder-revenge plot. He had targetted 3 RCMP, AN F.B.I. agent, 2 fed. just. dept. officials and a Tor. police det. On Aug 23/01 the detective was identified as Ron Taverner (currently 23 div. superint. then 51 div.) The account of the bust cites involvement by many police forces, Canadian & American, but did not involve metro police at the airport. Di Francesca's cell mate was Paul Vreeland, ostensibly a U.S. naval intell. officer, who later gained notoriety for his August 2001 predictions of Sept. 11 and the accurate account of Marc Bastien's poisoning murder in Moscow that had been attributed to natural causes (confirmed Tor Star Jan 21/02). Vreeland exposed the murder plots. You might ask how a brampton coke dealer busted at the airport by other police forces knew a downtown Tor. police supt like Ron Taverner. William Taverner an ex-cop and satan's choice affiliate is a close relative of Ron Taverner. Was a "special deal" broken? Why revenge? How did he know him? All the murder conspiracy charges were dropped a week before the preliminary in the wake of the 9/11 revelations (Tor. Star Oct 31/01). Vreeland was dismissed as "unsavory" by Justice Archie Campbell. The man predicts 9/11 and the murder of an agent in Moscow and he is unsavory? Is he more unsavoury than metro Tor. police? Counselling and conspiring to murder law officials is much more serious than drug offences. Francesca's extradition was to follow. Vreeland was abducted and probably murdered while awaiting his own extradition. His lawyers, Rocco Galati and Paul Slansky, say they were threatened by an intelligence agent on voice mail for their handling of the Abdur Khadr case. They said Paul Vreeland had twice been threatened by the same voice. Ron Taverner remains in place as chair of the Nat. Anti-Gun Task Force. Vreeland is presumed dead. Francesca received a 30 yr. prison term in Florida courts and currently shares a cell with Manuel Noriega.