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'Predatory’: Vancouver man jailed four years for fentanyl trafficking

Police found $46,978 worth of fentanyl and $15,696 worth of methamphetamine during a search warrant.
Vancouver Provincial Court
The judge said Chad Hubick's actions showed a "reckless disregard for human life."

A Vancouver Provincial Court judge denounced a fentanyl trafficker as predatory as he sentenced him to four years in prison for selling drugs in the city’s Downtown Eastside.

Chad Russell Hubick pleaded guilty to two counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking, said Judge Gregory Rideout, who noted he has latitude to consider the ongoing opioid crisis in sentencing such cases.

The judge called fentanyl a highly toxic drug that's responsible for an increase in mortality rates and overdoses in B.C.

“His drug trafficking was profit-driven,” Rideout said.

Rideout said while Hubick, 42, was selling drugs to vulnerable people in the Downtown Eastside, he was living in a downtown Howe Street boutique hotel and driving a Lexus.

“Clearly, his customer base in the Downtown Eastside did not enjoy the lavish lifestyle he was living,” Rideout said.

The judge called Hubick “opportunistic and predatory.”

He said trafficking to people living on the social margins showed a “reckless disregard for human life.”

Hubick was on conditional sentence orders for previous offences at the time, Rideout said.

Hubick was caught as a result of a Vancouver Police Department investigation into the Downtown Eastside drug trade. Police soon had him under surveillance in April 2020 and saw multiple hand-to-hand drug transactions, the court heard.

When a search warrant was executed, police found $46,978 worth of fentanyl and $15,696 worth of methamphetamine. They also found $10,615 in cash in a safe.

Rideout sentenced Hubick to four years on one count and three on the other, with time to be served concurrently

Hubick had told the court he had turned to drug dealing during hard times at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic when he had become homeless.

Rideout paid specific attention to a knife found in the trunk of the Lexus before adding a weapons ban to the sentence.

The judge said knives have become a common feature of the Downtown Eastside.

“Knives are an offensive, not a defensive, weapon,” Rideout said.