If anyone were to be denied bail, most non-law experts would speculate that it would be cocaine-dealing gangster Clayton Ehler, who last released his photo while on bail and his cousin’s personal information. A fake passport was obtained.
But Ehler was actually released on bail on Thursday (28 July) by a provincial court judge in Surrey.
Ehler, 39, is charged with committing crimes for a criminal organization related to an alleged crime in Chilliwack, Hope and Kamloops on May 1, 2021.
The same file also indicts Blair Robert Anders Smith, 59, of Merritt, who is facing one count of smuggling, and Tyler Damien van Basten, 30, of Chilliwack, who is facing smuggling. also accused of as well as conspiracy to commit a felony.
Ehler was also convicted of drug trafficking from a 2014 incident and now awaits a new trial after a successful bid in the B.C. Court of Appeals. In that case, Ehler and Matthew Thiessen were caught processing nine kilograms of cocaine with cutting agents in a Chilliwack condo on November 18, 2014.
He was convicted but the conviction was overturned on appeal due to a long delay by the sentencing judge in releasing his written reasons for dismissing a charter application.
Van Basten is Ehler’s cousin.
On April 9, 2019, Ehler was out on bail and was issued a fake passport in the name of Van Basten. Facial recognition software used by Global Affairs Canada identified Ehler as the man in the photo with a passport bearing Van Basten’s name.
The Joint Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU-BC) was made aware of the passport, and on June 26, 2019, his Chilliwack Mountain house was raided and arrested. Ammunition, banned arms, a fake birth certificate and a cocaine press were also found from his possession.
Judge Richard Browning canceled his bail.
As of 28 July 2022, a bail hearing was held in Surrey and he was again granted bail while facing new charges related to gang activity, including a retrial and fresh charge in the 2014 case.
However, he was put on some of the strictest bail conditions available. He is under house arrest for 24 hours at a specific address in Chiliwack.
He is under electronic surveillance and can leave the residence only with written permission from his bail supervisor and only for a medical emergency such as employment or “compelling reasons”.
He should not have any visitors except a short list of nominees.
Ehler is also not permitted to be within 100 meters of the US border unless there is written permission, and is not permitted to be within two kilometers of any airport.
He is also not allowed to download any encrypted messaging app like Signal.
He is due for the next hearing in Chilliwack’s court on August 9.
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ChilliwackCrime Organized CrimeRCMP