Godwin Cheng receives conditional sentence

Former associate of Jonathan Bacon pleaded guilty to a drug charge dating back to 2005 in Abbotsford.

Godwin Cheng is shown during a 2008 court appearance in Abbotsford.

Godwin Cheng is shown during a 2008 court appearance in Abbotsford.

A man who was charged along with Jonathan Bacon following an exchange of drugs in 2005 has received an 18-month conditional sentence (house arrest).

Godwin Cheng, 38, was initially charged with three counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking. He pleaded guilty to one of the counts, and the other two counts were stayed.

He was sentenced Friday in Surrey provincial court.

Cheng was arrested in August 2005 after police began an investigation into Bacon – killed in a gang-related drive-by shooting in Kelowna in August 2011 – and his girlfriend Rayleene Burton.

The couple shared a home on Winfield Drive in Abbotsford. According to court documents, police observed 15 transactions over a one-week period involving the transfer of packages between vehicles at and from their townhouse.

Police believed the transfers were drug-related.

On Aug. 4, 2005, investigators witnessed Bacon – a key player in the Red Scorpions gang – and Cheng transferring packages between vehicles and driving to a meeting point.

The two were then arrested, and among the items found in Cheng’s vehicle were marijuana, meth and ecstasy pills, cocaine, $2,600 cash and cellphones.

Shortly after, Burton was stopped in her car and police seized $88,000.

A subsequent search of the Winfield Drive home turned up marijuana, cash, four firearms, a bulletproof vest and a police uniform.

All three were charged with numerous offences, but the charges were dismissed by an Abbotsford provincial court judge in June 2008. The judge ruled that the searches of the vehicles and townhouse were not properly conducted and breached the trio’s charter rights.

However, the federal Crown filed an appeal, and the B.C. Court of Appeal ordered a new trial.

That decision was then challenged by the trio through the Supreme Court of Canada — the nation’s highest court and the last judicial resort.

The Supreme Court dismissed the appeal in February 2011 and ordered that the trial proceed. It had not yet begun when Bacon was killed.

Charges against Burton were stayed.

Cheng still has charges before the court in connection with another bust that occurred around the same time.

On Aug. 12, 2005, Abbotsford Police searched a residence in the 35600 block of Hawksview Place and allegedly found marijuana, cocaine, a loaded handgun, ammunition, a butterfly knife, brass knuckles and an Abbotsford Police bike squad mountain bike stolen four years previously.

Cheng was charged with two counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking, two counts of possessing a prohibited weapon, possession of stolen property, and four counts of breaching his bail conditions.

The matter is next scheduled for Dec. 10 in B.C. Supreme Court in Chilliwack.