Toronto and Halton police are investigating after several residents received suspicious extortion letters containing packages with white powder in the mail.
Residents in southern Etobicoke and Burlington, Ont. reported receiving these fraudulent letters, according to police.
Toronto Police Const. Alex Li told CP24 that several people had received letters specifically addressed to them and sent to their homes by post from an anonymous sender.
Halton police said the letters are believed to have been delivered by Canada Post in the morning hours of December 18.
The letters contained a small bag containing white powder that was allegedly fentanyl, police said.
Halton police said after the initial analysis the powder appeared to be confectioners’ sugar.
The people who received the letters were also ordered to deposit Bitcoin “in exchange for their family’s welfare,” Toronto police said.
“The letters contained threats to life and demanded that recipients send money or damage coming to them and / or their families (possibly through fentanyl poisoning),” reads a statement from Halton police.
Li said residents who receive the letters are discouraged from handling them as much as possible.
“Our experts and researchers are appealing to members of the public who receive these packs and letters to try as much as possible not to discuss these letters, bring them outside, take some form of a garbage can or lid and put it all over the top of that letter to protect it from the elements and to notify the police immediately, ”he said.
Police are asking anyone with information to contact them or Crime Stoppers anonymously.