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Friday, 19 March 2010

Store SHOOTINGS, Flawnego, is owned by Joseph Ducarme, believed to be a street-gang leader associated with the Reds.

08:24 | , , ,

Two people are dead and two are in hospital after a shooting inside a high-end Old Montreal clothing shop Thursday afternoon.
Joseph Ducarme, 41, survived a brazen midday shooting inside his Old Montreal shop that left two people dead.Ducarme managed to flee the building and, as of last night, was still missing - as were the two gunmen. It is not known whether he was injured in the attack.Ducarme's bodyguard, Peter Christopoulos, and an unidentified man were killed. Two other men were injured. One of them managed to flee the scene and drive himself to the hospital.Ducarme is out on $50,000 bail for a charge of assault and was under orders not to communicate with street gang members.He is reputed to have ties to the Reds, a street gang reportedly trying to mark its territory in the city's lucrative drug trade in bars and restaurants on St. Laurent Blvd.The decimation of the Hells Angels in a series of raids last year, in which the majority of the biker gang's members were arrested, left a major void in the city's drug trade.Ducarme has also been mentioned in police requests for search warrants associated with construction magnate Antonio Magi.
In a November request for a search warrant for Magi's office at 5730 Upper Lachine Rd., Montreal police said Magi hired Ducarme in July to collect outstanding loans. In exchange for his services, Magi, who has no criminal record, set Ducarme up in a condominium across the street from Wanda's strip club, above the Eggspectations restaurant at de Maisonneuve Blvd. and Mountain St.
Magi also survived an attempt on his life in 2008 when a gunman ambushed him in his car while he was driving on Cavendish Blvd. in Notre Dame de Grâce.Magi was recently in the news when Nicolo Rizzuto Jr. was gunned down steps away from his office.The son of Vito Rizzuto, the reputed head of the Montreal Mafia who is serving a 10-year-sentence in the United States for a racketeering conviction, was shot dead Dec. 28 on Upper Lachine Rd. near Magi's FTM Construction office.
Last fall, Magi confirmed he had a business relationship with Rizzuto Jr., saying the two had "bought a piece of land together which we are developing."
"He's studied law and he's a smart kid. He's smart in real estate."
A woman who answered the phone at Magi's office yesterday said he was not accepting calls.The warrant request for Magi's office also says Ducarme had an entourage of four to 15 people and feared retaliation from Italians, Arabs, and motorcycle and street gangs because of his involvement in the drug trade, armed robbery and extortion.
Ducarme had hired Christopoulos as a bodyguard, and Ducarme's cousin, Lamartine Sévère Paul, alias Polo, acted as his right-hand man in such criminal activities as intimidation, according to the document.
A police investigation, it says, led authorities to believe that Paul was involved in extortion, drug trafficking, pimping and loansharking and that he had several accomplices.Authorities also speculated Paul was responsible for collecting from several businesspeople to whom Ducarme had made high-interest loans.In November, Paul was arraigned on 11 charges of extortion and weapons possession.
The document says Paul, his brother, Vick Sévère Paul, and Fritz Gerald Michel, alias King, are members of the Reds and had been in an all-out war with a man they got into a fight with at a Laval strip club.Police allege the trio are armed and have been roaming around searching for Joseph Arold, who has a lengthy criminal record that includes charges of extortion.Vick Sévère Paul, who drives a white Mercedes worth about $100,000, is wanted by police in Ontario for attacking Arold with a knife.Vick Sévère Paul also owns a $400,000 condominium - despite the fact he has never declared any income or filed income-tax returns, the document says. The document alleges the condo is financed through pimping.Police, who quickly cordoned off St. Jacques St. in the city's downtown core, were searching for two gunmen.Bystanders milled about on the sidewalk, but none reported having witnessed the broad-daylight shooting.Montreal police spokeswoman Anie Lemieux said it was too early to tell the context of the crime, whether it was armed robbery or if there was some other motive.A reporter arrived to see a body being loaded into an ambulance and driven away.Two ambulances left the scene of the crime, while a third remained parked outside the store, on a strip lined with boutique hotels and offices.
The store, Flawnego, is owned by Joseph Ducarme, believed to be a street-gang leader associated with the Reds.Ducarme was facing assault charges and is alleged to have intimidated business owners in a bid to exert influence over drug territory.Montreal has been the site of a turf war over the illegal drug trade after police operations in recent years decimated the Hells Angels and hobbled the mob.Ducarme's name also surfaced in the wake of the December shooting of Nicolo Rizutto Jr., son of reputed Mafia don Vito Rizzuto.Documents to support a search warrant executed against two of Ducarme's associates identify him as an enforcer for Tony Magi, the construction magnate for whom Rizzuto worked.Rizzuto was gunned down in front of Magi's offices on Dec. 28 sparking fears of reprisals.

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