Winter is Here

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-Ali Kovacevic

Over the years we’ve had some easy winters in Calgary. In the past two years we’ve had an easy run with the cold. This week, Calgary has had one of it’s coldest winters yet.

This huge drop in temperatures have effected people across the city but what are we doing to combat the cold?

Some tips to consider when getting out of the house are:

  • Winter tires, brush, warming up your car
  • Multiple Layers
  • Winter shoes/boots
  • Vitamins to avoid sickness
  • Hot cup of tea and Coffee

 

Payday Loan Relief

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Alberta’s NDP Government has passed laws to help protect people who take out payday loans.

The new laws are made to focus on lowering the high-interest rates of loan users. The announcement comes at a very lucky time for many struggling Albertans, due to the holiday season and economy going through a rough patch.

Alberta’s Minister of Service, Stephanie McLean, says there are other government organizations that are willing to provide extra services for struggling families.

Matt Fetinko

Alberta’s Economic Forecast

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Alberta’s Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board, Joe Ceci, met with multiple private-sector economists to discuss the economic forecasts leading up to the 2017 budget.

Ceci says the economy is looking up and should continue to stabilize, and even grow, as we head into 2017. According to Ceci, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s recent approval of two pipelines is a major contributor to the projected growth.

Alberta’s NDP Government says even with the projected growth, they have to continue to control costs. Ceci says the government will continue with the Alberta Jobs Plan, but there is no extra head-room for any additional spending for the time being.

Matt Fetinko

Ten Arrested, 111 Charges laid in Organized Crime Investigation

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By Cassandra Stefanic

A year long ALERT investigation has concluded with over 100 charges laid, and the arrest of ten members of a Calgary organized crime group.

ALERT Calgary’s organized crime and gang team began the investigation in November of last year, and came to a close after the arrest of Primary suspect Timothy Varga, a 40-year-old man from Calgary.

Varga was considered the central figure in a criminal network that extended province lines, with ties in Manitoba, British Columbia and here in Alberta.

The 40 year old will be charged with Instructing Criminal Organization, two counts of Trafficking in Cocaine, and Possession of property obtained by crime, among other offences.

Timothy Varga, 40, Andrew McGuire, 41, Anotonio Chavez, 23, Jason Hamilton, 40, Larissa Cowan, 25, Jared Kennedy, 32, Spencer Allan-Elliott, 26, Corey DeBakker, 19, Alex Wawia, 40, and Justine Brind Suchar, 26, have all been charged a total of 111 times collectively, in connection to the investigation.

A Variety of drugs, and loaded weapons, some of which were stolen, were found after search warrants were conducted across western Canada throughout the course of the investigation.

Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their communities are encouraged to call the local police or crime stoppers.

 

Alberta Appoints New Chief Medical Examiner

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By Cassandra Stefanic

The Alberta government has appointed a forensic pathologist as the province’s new chief medical examiner.

Dr.Elizabeth Brooks-Lim, no stranger to similar positions, has previously served as deputy chief medical examiner in Edmonton, assistant chief medical examiner in Calgary, and forensic pathologist and coroner in Saskatchewan.

The appointment comes at an interesting time. Interim Liberal leader David Swann, called on the government to increase funding for the Chief medical office, on Tuesday, just two days before the announcement.

The gift would provide the department more timely and effective reporting on Alberta’s rapidly growing Opioid problem.

15 fatal drug overdoses have been linked to powerful street-drugs like fentanyl and carfentanil, 14 of which, have occurred within a 3 month time period.

Charges laid in murder of 17-year old boy

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By Cassandra Stefanic

Three men have been charged in connection to the city’s 27th homicide.

Ahmed Abid, 24, Mohammed Khalil, 28, and Ashraf Jasem Ajil, 23, have been named accessory after-the-fact, in the murder of a 17-year-old boy.

The victim has been identified as Ezzulddin Al-Ogaidi of Calgary.

CPS were called to the Northeast community of Montgomery, after a neighbor had said they heard a loud noise that came from the home.

Upon arrival the police found nothing.

Hours later, information led officers to a remote location in Morely where the body of the boy was found, and the investigation was quickly connected to the residence where the call was originally made.

Police are still looking for a 19 year old woman, also wanted in connection to the murder.

Kasetta Marshall is believed to be a witness involved in the case.

The investigation is still ongoing, police are asking anyone that may have further information to contact the Homicide Unit Tip Line at (403) 428-8877.

 

 

Crowds Chant “Lock Her Up” at Premier Rachel Notley

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By: Chelsea Tomecek

Premier Rachel Notley says Chants of “Lock Her Up” at a rally protesting her plans for a carbon tax, reflect the views of extreme groups of people in both conservative parties in Alberta.

On a trip to B.C. to promote the Trans-Mountain pipeline, she commented on the weekend rally in Edmonton that has been criticized by other conservatives.

The chant was identical to the one used against Democrat Hillary Clinton at Donald Trump rallies during the American Election campaign.