A police officer who was arrested along with dozens of people rounded up following a major drug trafficking investigation into the Hells Angels has been granted parole on the 18-month sentence he received in January.
Carl Ranger, 41, a member of the Repentigny police force when he was arrested in Project Objection last year, quit shortly after he was charged. He admitted that in August 2017 he approached an undercover agent who was involved in Project Objection and asked him for a $6,000 loan, and then broke the law to get it.
The undercover agent said he would agree to the loan if Ranger did a few favours for him. The first was to research a licence plate in a police database for the undercover agent, who was posing as a criminal. To have an excuse for accessing the database, Ranger pulled over a car for no justifiable reason. After carrying out that task, Ranger agreed to transport 10,000 meth pills to a drug dealer and returned with $10,000 for the undercover agent. Ranger contacted a drug user he knew to accompany him.
When Ranger pleaded guilty in October, no evidence presented in court suggested that what he agreed to had anything to do with the Hells Angels. Several full-patch members of the biker gang have been arrested since April last year, when the first series of arrests were carried out. Some have since pleaded guilty to running groups of dealers who sold cocaine in different parts of the province.
According to the decision made by the Commission québécoise des libérations conditionnelles on Monday, Ranger said his career spiralled downward after having been a police officer for only four years. In 2008, he discovered the body of a woman who had been murdered. While the parole decision does not specify when Ranger discovered the body, it appears to be a reference to July 3, 2008, when Repentigny patrol officers pulled over a driver who appeared to be impaired and found the body of a 40-year-old Montreal woman who had been stabbed to death inside the vehicle. The driver of the car was sentenced in 2009 to a 12-year prison term.
Ranger said he was diagnosed as having suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder following the gruesome discovery, but deplored that he received only seven months of psychological support from the police force. He said he drank more and fell into financial trouble when he reduced his workload when his spouse had a baby and after a close relative died. Also, between 2015 and 2017, his salary was reduced by 30 per cent while he was on a leave of absence after having injured his leg. Ranger told the parole board he accumulated thousands of dollars of debt during that period and refused to declare bankruptcy.
Also, in May 2015, the Police Ethics Committee suspended Ranger for two days because of his conduct after he and his partner pulled over a car in 2011.
“You say you never wanted to live such a nightmare, one you created on your own. You admit your responsibility and accept the consequences,” the author of the parole decision wrote. “You explained that officers with the Sûreté du Québec asked if you would be interested in taking part in conferences, by video, with police forces (discussing) the consequences of your actions. You have accepted to participate in this volunteer project.”
Ranger was eligible for parole after having served one-sixth of his sentence. His prison term will be followed by two years of probation.