Two sheriff deputies and their deputy sheriff canines were recognized Aug. 14 by the United States Postal Inspection Service for their role in “Operation Club Shabu.” The national operation ran from Jan. 23 to Feb. 10, and targeted illegal importation of controlled substances into Hawaii and Guam through the U.S. mail.
The Sheriff Division K9 Unit provides law enforcement by trained handlers and canines that supports explosive and drug detection operations for federal, state and county law enforcement efforts.
Deputy Sheriff Randall Silva with Deputy Sheriff Canine Zorro, and Deputy Sheriff Patrick Lewis with Deputy Sheriff Canine Rico are part of the Sheriff Division K9 Unit that worked on “Operation Club Shabu” and were presented a letter of appreciation by U.S. Postal Inspection Service Team Leader Miguel Montalvo.
The team randomly screened more than 170,000 parcels, of which 225 were selected for further investigation by the K9s.
The operation resulted in 36 arrests, along with the seizure of various types of contraband, and more than $726,000 in cash.
“This is a great example of the collaborative partnership between the Department of Public Safety and our federal law enforcement partners in Hawaii,” said Public Safety Department Director Ted Sakai. “We will continue to work hard to ensure the safety and welfare of our community by effectively using every means at our disposal to stop harmful criminal activities.”
“Our Sheriff Division K9 teams continue to lead the Public Safety Department effort in the seizure of contraband and in stopping the flow of funds from illegal activities,” said State Sheriff Shawn Tsuha. “We look forward to successful future efforts with our federal, state and county partners.”
The first of several asset forfeiture checks was also given to the Sheriff Division. That money can be used for law enforcement training and equipment.
Since June of 2007 Sheriff Division K9 teams have contributed to the overall law enforcement effort against criminal activity which resulted in: Total currency seizures of $1.8 million, total marijuana seizures of 501 pounds, total meth seizures of 66 pounds, total cocaine seizures of 16 pounds, total heroin seizures of 3.2 ounces, and total MDMA (Ecstasy) seizures of 4,222 units.