Police are searching for a man allegedly involved in the first human trafficking ring uncovered in Atlantic Canada.

Police charged Cortinel James Downey, 25, with human trafficking and living off the avails of prostitution on Nov. 5. But so far they haven’t been able to find him.

Now police are putting out a call to the public to help find Downey, who has ties to both the Halifax area and Niagara.


The alleged ring was uncovered by Operation Intercede, a July sting involving 25 warrants in 15 residences throughout HRM. More than 60 charges were laid against 15 people, including what was believed to be the first ever charge for human trafficking in the region.

Downey was not charged at that time, but police say their investigation of him was a result Operation Intercede.

“Information was learned and it led to another investigation,” said Halifax Regional Police spokesperson, Const. Brian Palmeter.

“We made attempts to locate him, we haven’t been able to. At this point we can’t determine a fixed location, a fixed residence for him.”

Palmeter said he couldn’t give any details of the human trafficking charges as they are before the court, but said such cases are extremely rare.

Downey is considered armed and dangerous.

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