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5 charged in Calgary kidnappings that targeted innocent women

Calgary police have charged five men in a pair of kidnappings last year that targeted innocent victims.

Police launched an investigation on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, after learning a woman in her 20s had been kidnapped from a northeast parking lot.

The victim was heading to her vehicle, parked outside her workplace, when she was approached by an unknown man and forced into his vehicle.

The victim’s family was then notified that she had been taken.

During their investigation, police learned a second victim had also been kidnapped several hours after the first, allegedly as an act of retaliation.

The second victim, a woman in her 50s, had been taken from a southeast Calgary home at gunpoint.

Both women were held at separate Calgary homes rented through Airbnb until Thursday, May 4.

“The women were assaulted multiple times before being released by suspects,” police said in a Monday news release.

Calgary police released this photo of a Calgary Airbnb rental on Citadel Estates Heights N.W. while investigating a kidnapping, The incidents lasted more than 30 hours and saw police from across the city working to bring the women home safely.

Once located, one of the women was taken to hospital.

‘Sophisticated and planned’

Calgary police say both the kidnappings were “sophisticated and planned events” involving “various levels of organized-crime members.”

“These individuals were involved in organized crime and they came into conflict through drug trafficking, and this was the manor in which they dealt with it,” Stewart said in a Monday news conference. 

He said this type of activity is an example of how organized-crime related violence impacts more than just those involved, including innocent family members.

Investigation leads to charges

The complexity of the investigation led to two investigative teams being assigned.

“In this case, we determined several offenders were from outside of Calgary, and likely hired through their criminal connections,” said Staff Sgt. Roland Stewart of the organized crime response unit.

Over the nine months that followed, the Calgary Police Service worked with the Windsor Police Service in Ontario, the Vancouver Police Department in B.C., the Lethbridge Police Service and the Edmonton Police Service to find those responsible.

Police also searched five properties in Calgary, Edmonton and Windsor, Ont.

Charges laid

Five men are charged in connection to the kidnappings.

Raejean Charles Sydney Hudson, 23, and Enyi-Egbe Idedevbo, 28, both of Windsor, were arrested in November. Each faces one charge of kidnapping.

Code Ouellette, 38, and Aireajah Taylor-Francois, 21, both of Edmonton, were arrested in January and charged with multiple offences including kidnapping and sexual assault.

Then, on Feb. 15, police arrested a fifth man, Ramien Joshua Naimi, 34, of Calgary, at a home in the city’s northwest. 

Calgary police seized this gun, which was loaded, during the search of a home on Thusday, Feb. 15, 2024. (Calgary Police Service handout) Naimi faces 26 offences, including careless storage of a firearm, uttering threats and possession of an unlicensed weapon.

Organized crime in Calgary

Calgary police say they’ve seen a “significant shift” in the landscape of the city’s organized crime landscape over the past 10 years.

“Offenders today are highly motivated by money, and we see allegiances change, sometimes on a daily basis,” Stewart said.

“While these individuals don’t always identify themselves as ‘groups,’ their relationships both within and outside of their network are very volatile, and fractures result in the violence that we see.

“This adds complexity when we are working to prevent and suppress organized-crime-related violence in our city.”

Anyone with any further information about the kidnappings is asked to call police at 403-266-1234. Tips can also be submitted through Crime Stoppers anonymously.

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