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Suspects linked to Innisfil human and drug trafficking ring appear in court

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It's been four months since South Simcoe police investigators said three women were safely removed from a residence in Innisfil where it's believed they were being held to provide sexual services as part of a human and drug trafficking ring.

Seven people face charges in connection with the investigation. Five of the accused appeared in courtrooms in Barrie and Bradford on Thursday, including four who are out on bail.

Police said search warrants were executed at two residences in November, which resulted in the alleged seizure of $30,000 worth of drugs, including cocaine, crystal meth, and fentanyl, as part of its Project Chameleon investigation.

Police revealed investigators initially received a tip in May about a woman being sex-trafficked out of a home in Innisfil.

South Simcoe police said they identified three suspects accused of posting online ads for sexual services of several women from Bradford and Innisfil.

The accused in the case, Jashyna Singh and Oneil Hopkinson, remain behind bars along with Tyrone Dias. Their co-accused Hung Lam, Joseph Carvalho, Edgar Martinez and Royden Reis were granted bail and face sex and drug trafficking charges, including procuring, advertising, and materially benefitting from sexual services.

Police said Hopkinson is also accused of sexual assault.

While defence lawyers representing the seven accused review the evidence against their clients, Singh, Dias and Hopkinson seek bail.

The accused are all scheduled to make their next appearance in the coming weeks.

The allegations against each of the accused have not been tested in court.

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