Leaked police report: Hamilton City Councillor Sam Merulla & former Police Board Chair linked with organized crime, ‘Ndrangheta mafia

Hamilton Councillor Sam Merulla and Musitano brothers in leaked police secret report. (montage – click for large.)

Whistleblower Derrick Snowdy reveals mob penetration of Hamilton Police Service.

A leaked 2006 Organized Crime Section report from ‘Project SCOPA’ shows City of Hamilton, Ontario, Ward 4 Councillor Sam MERULLA under police investigation and linked to ‘Ndrangheta mafia mob figures including Antonio ‘Tony’ AGRESTA and the recently-murdered Angelo MUSITANO of the Musitano Crime Family.

Two pages of the leaked report surfaced on the Twitter account of high-profile private investigator Derrick Snowdy (@jdsnowdy) on December 19, 2017 along with an allegation that in 2007 someone in the Golden Horseshoe RCMP detachment sabotaged an ongoing OPP Ontario Provincial Police investigation into Sam Merulla and members of the mob.

Snowdy states that at the time of the investigation in 2006 Sam Bernie Morelli was the Chair of the Hamilton Police Services Board and was also under police investigation.

Snowdy’s tweet and the attached unredacted documents have been seen (and perhaps copied) by thousands of people in the last four days before I even noticed them.

Here they are… (click to enlarge)

Although the unredacted documents are circulating on the Internet, I have redacted addresses and dates of birth in the above documents as I have a policy of not publishing Identity Information.

You will note that document #1 contains a bleed-through of a police intelligence report listing Sam MERULLA, Angelo MUSITANO and others as associates of mob member Antonio ‘Tony’ AGRESTA. Document #2 shows Merulla with the Musitano brothers.

About a month ago Derrick Snowdy also published on the internet several pages of a July 24, 2002 Halton Regional Police confidential intelligence report detailing how mobsters Domenic VIOLI and Paul GRAVELLE had a number of police officers on the payroll, including corrupt Hamilton cop Richard WILLS. (read Domenic Violi arrest a reminder that Organized Crime has penetrated Canadian police for decades)

Police to search home of Whistleblower Derrick Snowdy?

Snowdy has given no indication as to the source of these confidential police intelligence reports, but in November 2017 the Halton Regional Police stated that they were looking into the matter.

This latest release will no doubt cause further police scrutiny of Derrick Snowdy but if the involved police services are thinking of executing a search warrant at Snowdy’s home or business – I can tell them with certainty that they would find nothing.

I have never spoken with Derrick Snowdy, but knowing his history as an experienced investigator in major cases and that he was a central figure in the 2010 ‘Busty Hookers’ case that saw former Status of Women minister Helena Guergis turfed from the Harper Government and the Conservative party – I know that Snowdy is no neophyte.

Derrick Snowdy

Any leaked documents in Snowdy’s possession would at the very least not be at his home, business or the home of any relative or close friend. Most likely, the documents are scanned, encrypted and stored in multiple locations online that only he can access from memory. He would never access those locations from any computer or internet service registered to him or any friend or relative. There would be nothing at his home or business – not even an encrypted USB stick or drive – that would reveal any additional documents or their source.

Whistleblower Derrick Snowdy would conceal his movements and data with the concern and even the fear of someone championing freedom in any corrupt nation you can think of BECAUSE… he knows that in Canada various powerful cabals exist. Snowdy knows that some of these powerful cabals operate in Canada’s legal system, in policing, and in various levels of government. He also knows that these cabals will do anything to protect members from embarrassment or worse, and to retain power and status. The messenger of any wrongdoing by cabal members, in this case Snowdy, is aways the first target.

Snowdy also knows that organized crime always attempts to gain footholds and influence in legitimate organizations, including in government, police, the courts and the news media. He knows he is at risk and a target for revealing mob operations to the public.

Nope… there is nothing at Derrick Snowdy’s home or business that would reveal more leaked police documents or the source of the leak. Nothing.

Whistleblowing at this level takes a special kind of courage and integrity – and Derrick Snowdy has these qualities in good measure – along with ‘Police Officer X’ who must be the ultimate source of the documents.

‘Police Officer X’ probable source of the Snowdy leaked documents

It is apparent that the Snowdy documents (assuming they are genuine and I have no reason to believe they are not genuine) are likely originally sourced from a police officer who works or worked in an Organized Crime squad. As each of the documents was probably circulated through various municipal police agencies as well as the Ontario Provincial Police and RCMP, it will probably be impossible to trace the individual officer who originally leaked the documents.

I’ll call this source ‘Police Officer X’. Snowdy may have received these documents directly from Officer X, or through an intermediary. Or… Police Officer X might have anonymously sent them to Snowdy through a variety of methods.

I can only speculate as to the motivations of Police Officer X, but here is my guess…

Police Officer X is probably a long-serving officer working in organized crime who has seen over the years (as we all have) the efforts of organized crime to corrupt the police, courts and the government. He or she has seen good investigations thwarted and exposed. Officer X has seen criminals and mobsters go free as cabals stopped investigations to protect high-profile cabal members from being seen to be associated with known criminals.

So… I speculate Officer X did an end-run and leaked the documents because he or she believes that only the sunlight of exposure will undermine the corrupt. It takes courage and integrity to make such a choice. Officer X has these qualities.

Caution regarding Ward 4 Councillor Sam MERULLA

Hamilton Councillor Sam Merulla

As we examine the leaked documents, we must remember that we have only had a glimpse of a years-long project targeting organized crime. Is the man who changes the oil in a mobster’s car an associate… or just the guy who works at the local garage? As a police officer working organized crime you have to keep an open mind and rely upon building a wall of evidence that leaves no doubt as to the structure of criminal organizations, the members, associates, facilitators – and identifying those who aren’t really involved or associated. It is difficult. Sometimes you can’t be sure no matter how long you work at it.

As an experienced organized crime investigator, it is my opinion that for Sam Merulla’s photo and name to be so definitively featured in the organized crime intelligence reports, some supporting evidence must exist. That’s my opinion – but am I correct? Perhaps the missing pages of the Snowdy documents hold the answer. Or perhaps Sam Merulla can clarify things.

And yet… I was once investigated myself (and cleared) by the FBI, RCMP and Toronto Police for links to the Hell’s Angels Motorcycle Gang.

The year was 1977 and I was a motorcycle patrol officer working out of #2 District Traffic in Etobicoke. During that summer I was temporarily assigned to the CNE Canadian National Exhibition to direct traffic and patrol the grounds on my Harley Davidson. (As an aside, there is no better summer job for a 23 year old handsome rookie cop than to motor around the CNE, looking good and talking with tourists and the fine young ladies.)

One afternoon some American tourists asked to take photos with me beside my motorcycle. This was common and happened uncountable times a day. So, I held their four year old son and allowed him to wear my helmet as one of their friends took a series of photos. Smiling, we had our arms around each other and I also allowed everyone to sit on the Toronto Police Harley dresser. That was standard too – as people loved to have their and their children’s photos taken on a police bike. The kids go wild.

Flash forward about a year. I reported for duty and was immediately taken into a room with some very serious people – including Inspector Clay Crawford (my unit commander), a Staff Sergeant from the Intelligence Bureau, and officers from the FBI and RCMP. They wanted to know why US police raided a Hell’s Angels club house and discovered a large framed photo of yours truly, in uniform, smiling with my arms draped around a Hell’s Angels gang leader and his family.

As I looked at the photo I started to laugh and told my story. One of the serious people in the room said something like, “Yeah, that’s what we figured, but we had to be sure. Your name didn’t come up on the lines. (wiretaps)”

Another serious person interupted and stopped the conversation – chiding that the first had revealed a wiretap operation and that was not needed. Did the RCMP tap my home phone? I think they did, but in those days there was no law requiring police to notify wiretap subjects if no charges were laid.

So ended the investigation into my ‘association’ with the Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang.

No response from Sam Merulla

I’ve emailed Mr. Merulla and sent him a draft of this story, but so far have not had a response – but it’s Christmas so who knows if he viewed my email yet. I’ll send another.

Did Sam Merulla unknowingly have his photo taken with members of Hamilton’s mafia? Is that how his name and photo ended up in a police Organized Crime report? Or, is there another, deeper set of facts?

Let’s all keep open minds as we await a response from Hamilton Ward 4 Councillor Sam Merulla.

CORRECTION: The original version of this article reported that Hamiliton City Councillor Sam Merulla was Police Board Chair during the police investigation. Derrick Snowdy has clarified his original Tweet and indicates that Merulla was a Councillor during the investigation, while Bernie Morelli was the Chair of the Hamilton Police Services Board at the time. According to Snowdy, both Merulla and Morelli were under investigation.

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Donald Best
Barrie, Ontario, Canada