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Chilliwack cocaine trafficker pleads guilty 9 years after arrest

Mathew Thiessen scheduled for sentencing in August; co-accused Clayton Eheler still to be retried
Mathew Thiessen was convicted in 2018 along with Clayton Eheler for cocaine trafficking in 2014. Both men were successful on appeal, but Thiessen pleaded guilty on Jan. 30, 2023. (File)

Chilliwack gangster Clayton Eheler’s co-accused in a case of cocaine trafficking dating back nine years has now pleaded guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced in the summer.

Mathew Thiessen pleaded guilty to one count of possession for the purpose of trafficking on Jan. 30. He was back in court on Tuesday (Feb. 7) where a sentencing date was set for Aug. 31, 2023.

The 36-year-old was with Eheler in a Brett Avenue apartment on Nov. 18, 2014 when they were busted by RCMP officers while they were processing nine kilograms of cocaine.

The two men were convicted of possession for the purpose of trafficking and Eheler was sentenced to nine years in prison in November 2019. Those convictions, however, were overturned on appeal due to a long delay in the sentencing judge releasing his written reasons for rejecting a charter application.

Eheler is still awaiting a retrial on that charge in addition to a new charge of commission of an offence for a criminal organization for something alleged in 2021 while he was out on bail.

While out on bail, Eheler once had his bail revoked after he was arrested picking up a fraudulent passport with his photo and his cousin Tyler Van Basten’s personal information. Since then he found a friendlier judge in David Albert out of Surrey who has twice released him on bail despite numerous alleged breaches.

READ MORE: If a gangster who once acquired a fraudulent passport while out on bail can get bail, can anyone?

READ MORE: Chilliwack gangster Clayton Eheler back in custody after being out on bail

Thiessen was scheduled to plead guilty in early November 2022 but he decided to wait for the federal government to enact new legislation repealing mandatory minimum sentences for drug trafficking.

On Nov. 17, 2022, Bill C-5 was given Royal Assent. The bill amends the Criminal Code and the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to, among other things, “repeal certain mandatory minimum penalties, allow for a greater use of conditional sentences and establish diversion measures for simple drug possession offences.”

The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled a number of mandatory minimum sentences unconstitutional, but Bill C-5 repeals 14 criminal code mandatory minimums and six in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

Thiessen is scheduled for sentencing on Aug. 31.

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