Canadian sentenced to 30 months in US for smuggling cannabis disguised as waffles

| Morton Robertson

A Canadian man who was charged with trying to bring 100 kg of cannabis and 50 kilograms of ketamine disguised as a shipment of waffles into the US in 2023 has now been sentenced to 30 months in prison.

In a press release from May 13, US Attorney Trini E. Ross announced that Ajaypal Dhillon of Ontario, convicted of smuggling merchandise into the United States, was sentenced to serve 30 months in prison by US District Judge John L. Sinatra, Jr.

Dhillon is said to have presented customs officials at the border crossing with documents indicating a shipment of frozen waffles destined for a grocery store warehouse in Georgia, but the issuer of the document told officers it was fraudulent. 

US authorities listed his age in 2023 as being 22, but in a 2024 press release it’s listed as 20.

He claimed to be transporting the shipment of frozen waffles to a Publix grocery store warehouse in the US state of Georgia. However, representatives from Publix say that the shipment was not expected, and the supposed shipper of the product confirmed with authorities that the shipment was fraudulent. 

Further investigation also found five previous trips made by Dhillon: four of the trips alleged the transport of candy, and the fifth was also for waffles after an attempt to transport “candy” was denied by the customs broker.

US seizures of Canadian cannabis are not uncommon, especially at the Peace Bridge. Large seizures increased significantly while the US/Canadian border was closed to non-essential traffic during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

While there were around 135,000 kg seized at this border in the fiscal years of 2020 and 2021, only 23,000 kilograms were seized in 2022, and about 13,000 so far for the fiscal year 2023 (beginning October 2022), with nearly 10,000 kg of that being seized in March, April and May 2023.