Montreal man finds $45K worth of prison contraband in his backyard

The package's serpentine shape allows inmates to slide the contents between very narrow prison bars. (Radio-Canada - image credit)
The package's serpentine shape allows inmates to slide the contents between very narrow prison bars. (Radio-Canada - image credit)

When Michel found a large package containing cannabis, cell phones and other contraband hanging from his clothing line in Montreal, he was shocked.

The merchandise found by Michel, whose identity is being protected due to safety concerns, was worth approximately $45,000. It would have made its way into the black market, had it arrived at its rightful destination — the Bordeaux prison.

"I live more than four kilometres from the prison. The whole family is still amazed to have found this package, which clearly accidentally fell from a drone," he said.

Michel immediately called the police to get rid of the seven-metre long sealed package.

"The chances of this package falling from the sky at my house were tiny," he said.

"Personally, I would have preferred to win an amount with Loto-Québec!"

According to Radio-Canada police sources, the coiled package contained nearly a kilogram of cannabis, hashish, tobacco, a homemade knife and miniature cell phones with SIM cards giving access to the LTE network.

"At first glance, it's an air delivery which had to be made precisely to a cell's window," said Mathieu Lavoie, the president of the union of peace officers in Quebec's correctional services.

He says the serpentine shape allows inmates to slide the package's contents between the very narrow prison bars.

"Considering that cannabis alone sells for five times more inside walls than on the street, a package worth more than $45,000 was lost by organized crime," said Lavoie.

"There is someone, somewhere, who has just fallen heavily into debt with a criminal organization, because he could not complete the delivery as planned."

The package found in Michel's backyard was taken in for analysis and its contents will be incinerated, said Montreal police.

Costly black market contraband

According to the union, cannabis sells for about $50 per gram in prisons, while cannabis bought on the street is about $10 per gram. A $200 SIM card goes for about $1,000 in prison.

One Montreal police officer, who is not authorized to comment on the incident, said biker gangs control the lucrative black market of provincial prisons in Quebec.

According to Radio-Canada, Montreal police receive more than 300 complaints per year from residents complaining about drones. The complaints also sometimes concern suspicious packages found on property near prisons.