TORONTO: Convicted killer Andrew “Burnz” Burnett to be sentenced for 2012 Main St. and Kingston Rd. murder

Convicted killer to be sentenced for 2012 Main St. and Kingston Rd. murder 

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BY , TORONTO SUN

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Andrew Burnett
Andrew Burnett who was convicted of second degree murder is pictured in this handout photo. (Photo courtesy CBC)

TORONTO - Andrew “Burnz” Burnett vowed to go straight nine years ago to survive the gunfire rampant in his Jane-Finch neighbourhood.

Burnett, a violent drug dealer, survived gun violence but never reached his goal.

He’s now a convicted killer serving a life prison sentence after a jury in April found him guilty of second-degree murder for shooting Cory Campbell as part of a twisted love triangle tragedy in September 2012.

The jury rejected Burnett’s account of self-defence. The jury also spurned the prosecution’s theory that the homicide was a planned, deliberate execution by Burnett, helping his pal Jayna Badger eliminate her boyfriend Campbell at her Main St. and Kingston Rd. building.

Campbell believed Burnett and Badger were lovers.

The getaway car driver, Jeramy Henry, 28, was convicted of manslaughter, received a time served sentence of four years and is now free.

Crown attorney Joanne Capozzi implored Justice Anne Molloy to order Burnett to serve 15 to 18 years before he could seek parole. His lawyer Sean Robichaud is asking Molloy to limit parole ineligibility to 10 to 12 years. Molloy will pass sentence on July 23.

B.C.: Refugee family from Saudi Arabia built notorious family crime empire in Canada

B.C. parents learn hard $170,000 lesson in breeding ‘family crime empire’

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 | June 11, 2015 10:56 PM ET
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The family’s fourth son, Mahmoud Alkhalil, was one of three people killed in a notorious gunfight in 2003 in Vancouver’s Loft Six nightclub.

Nick Procaylo/Postmedia News/Files The family’s fourth son, Mahmoud Alkhalil, was one of three people killed in a notorious gunfight in 2003 in Vancouver’s Loft Six nightclub.

Two of their sons died in gangland shootouts, two others face drug trafficking or murder charges from mob-related incidents, and a fifth is on the run abroad. Now, their parents are learning another hard lesson in breeding a self-made crime group — they’ve lost the $170,000 they posted to have their eldest son released from jail.

Hossein Al Khalil and Soumayya Azzam were fighting in court to salvage bond money paid to have Nabil Alkhalil released. Their bond was lost when he fled Canada on a bogus passport soon after.

The judge’s ruling against them — with Nabil still a fugitive — is but one entry in an unrelenting stream of bad news involving their sons.

Toronto Police Service

Toronto Police Service Rabih Alkhalil is charged in a Vancouver hit and in a shooting at a cafe patio in Toronto’s Little Italy.

These two parents of five sons came to Canada, presumably to make a better life for themselves. Now, having buried two kids before they reached the age of 20, they have two more facing the possibility of a long time in prison,” said Sgt. Lindsey Houghton of B.C.’s Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit.

“The actions of these boys have destroyed that family.”

The family arrived in Canada from Saudi Arabia as refugees in 1990, although their roots are believed to be in Iran, and settled in Surrey, B.C. After two sons were killed in gangland violence, they moved to Ottawa and Montreal.

“They took all of their organized crime and gang connections with them,” said Houghton.

The couple’s second son had been the first to die.

In 2001, Khalil Alkhalil, 19, was shot dead in Surrey in a gunfight over a drug debt. His killer claimed self-defence and was freed. The shooter’s lawyer was beaten up in court by angry supporters of Alkhalil, and the shooter himself was later gunned down in Kelowna in a case that remains unsolved.

The fourth son, Mahmoud Alkhalil, was one of three people killed in a notorious gunfight in 2003 between gang rivals in Vancouver’s Loft Six nightclub. He made it out of the building, but was found bleeding and unconscious after crashing his car 20 blocks away. When he succumbed to his injuries at age 19, he already had a lengthy criminal record.

The youngest son, Rabih “Robby” Alkhalil, was only two when he came to Canada.

RCMP raids in GTA made ‘significant dent’ in ‘Ndrangheta crime group

As of today, key cells of ‘Ndrangheta ‘no longer effective’: RCMP

CBC News Posted: Jun 03, 2015 10:49 AM ET Last Updated: Jun 03, 2015 4:24 PM ET

Guns, drugs and cash were seized during this week's raids, which resulted in the arrest of 19 members or associates of organized crime cells, said Supt. Keith Finn of the RCMP's Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit at a news conference Wednesday.Guns, drugs and cash were seized during this week’s raids, which resulted in the arrest of 19 members or associates of organized crime cells, said Supt. Keith Finn of the RCMP’s Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit at a news conference Wednesday.

Tuesday’s early morning police raids across the GTA were linked to a two-year investigation of the notorious international organized crime group known as ‘Ndrangheta, which police say has been effectively dismantled for now.

Known as Operation Ophoenix, the investigation spanned multiple Toronto-area municipalities and police forces including Toronto, Hamilton, Oakville, Brantford, Guelph and Barrie, as well as Waterloo, Niagara, Durham, Peel and York regions, and targeted the highest levels of the organization operating in the GTA. Over 260 officers were involved.

The ‘Ndrangheta is a specific confederation of Mafia families that originated in southern Calabria, Italy, and has since spread to various international regions, including Canada,” said RCMP Supt. Keith Finn, the officer in charge of the Combined Special Forces Enforcement Unit for the GTA. 

“There are two key cells of the ‘Ndrangheta, and I would say they are significantly dented. Today, they are no longer effective,” Finn said, adding elements of the criminal operation, including international drug trafficking, remain active and the investigation is ongoing.

Everyone arrested either had direct or first-generation ties to southern Italy, or was a “facilitator or enabler” of crime, Finn said.

SURREY, B.C.: East Indian parents discuss ideas to prevent gang-related violence

Reaching young people most at-risk is crucial, forum hears

CBC News Posted: May 05, 2015 10:30 PM PT Last Updated: May 06, 2015 10:42 AM PT

The organizer of the event, Meera Gill, says more needs to be done to keep youth out of gangs.

Roughly 100 people gathered in Surrey on Tuesday to come up with ways to fight back against the spate of drug-related violence in the city.

People jotted down ideas, trying to figure out solutions for reaching young people who are most at-risk of becoming involved in gun and drug violence. Police say there is a gang turf war on the streets of Surrey that has spilled into Delta and resulted in 22 shootings and one homicide in six weeks.

“A lot of East Indian parents are so involved in work and unfortunately the problem with that is they’re so involved in trying to make a good living for their children that they don’t have the time to be involved in their children’s life,” says one Surrey parent Ruby Deol. 

Surrey teen Jayden Grewal says there is a lot of peer pressure to try drugs and sell them. 

“People keep on telling you to sell drugs, to try them. It’s really hard … as you’re talking to the older kids, you find out they’ve tried that stuff and [there is] a lot of peer pressure.”

The organizer of the event, Meera Gill, says more needs to be done to keep youth out of gangs. 

“We want to be at the preventive stage,” she says. ”When someone gets shot, that’s enforcement. RCMP will take care of that. But as parents, we want to say how can we save our kids before we get to that stage.”

Gill says the ideas they collect tonight will be sent to all three levels of government as well as Surrey RCMP.

Kash Heed says gang violence in Surrey is not a ‘South Asian’ issue

Former solicitor general says solution to violence is comprehensive approach, not finger pointing

By The Early Edition, CBC News Posted: May 05, 2015 8:14 AM PT Last Updated: May 05, 2015 8:14 AM PT

Kash Heed, a former B.C. solicitor general, is criticizing what he calls an “ethnic approach” to a recent outbreak of violence in Surrey and Delta, B.C., in the past two months.

Police have pointed to “low-level drug dealers” in the South Asian and Somali communities.

“Some people seem to have this bizarre belief that it’s something within the South Asian culture that creates this type of individual when in fact it’s across all groups, regardless of their ethnic background,” Heed, who was an officer with the Vancouver Police Department during another surge in gang violence in the early 2000s, told The Early Edition’s Rick Cluff.

Police have said they are being stonewalled by the families of the victims who are not coming forward with information — something Heed said isn’t surprising.

“You have to remember the individuals who are involved in this dispute are in their 20s. They’re not young kids. They’re not 12 and 13-years-old where the family still has a lot of control on that,” said Heed.

Heed, a former B.C. Liberal MLA, wants to see a comprehensive approach to gang violence — with more funding to build prevention programs for at-risk youth, better supports in schools and crack downs on known offenders.

“Law enforcement officials [need to] take this seriously and put them behind bars and deal with it — but then think long term,” he said.

Former B.C. NDP MLA Moe Sihota has also criticized the focus on the South Asian and Somali communities.

“Surrey has a crime problem that extends through all elements of the community. The Bacon brothers weren’t Somali,” Sihota said in an interview last week.

To hear the full interview with Kash Heed, listen to the audio labelled: Kash Heed on gang violence.

String of Surrey shootings connected to turf war between Somali and South Asian gangs

Young refugees have little support for trauma, says head of Umoja Operation Compassion Society of BC

By The Early Edition, CBC News Posted: Apr 30, 2015 12:55 PM PT Last Updated: Apr 30, 2015 12:55 PM PT

The Umoja Operation Compassion Society of BC helps young African refugees to adjust to life in Canada - and its executive director says more needs to be done to prevent young people getting involved with gangs.The Umoja Operation Compassion Society of BC helps young African refugees to adjust to life in Canada – and its executive director says more needs to be done to prevent young people getting involved with gangs. (umojaoperation.ca/)

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Keeping Somali youth out of gangs 6:49

The head of a Surrey, B.C.-based organization that works with Somali immigrants and refugees wants better gang prevention programs for youth, as the community grapples with 23 shootings in two months.

RCMP have said the shootings are connected to a turf war between rival Somali and South Asian gangs.

“It’s a big problem generally in the youth. If there are no youth programs the Somalis won’t be there,” Amos Kambere, Executive Director of theUmoja Operation Compassion Society of BC, told The Early Edition’sRick Cluff.

Huge culture shock

Kambere said many of the Somalis who come to Canada have suffered violence in refugee camps and experience a huge culture shock when they arrive.

“These people are coming with issues of trauma, issues of mental health and when they come here they are overwhelmed.”