Reiner Ruska, a 36- year old Canadian amateur bodybuilder, pleaded guilty to three counts of trafficking anabolic steroids and cocaine and one count of possessing more than $70,000 in proceeds from drug trafficking. Ruska was sentenced to five years in prison after defense attorney David Rose and federal prosecutor Lisa Matthews submitted a joint recommendation on his behalf.
Crown Justice Richard Jennis accepted the guilty plea as an acknowledgement of Ruska’s remorse and accepted the sentencing recommendations. Justice Jennis noted Ruska’s lack of a previous criminal record and his entrepreneurial skills that make him a good candidate for future lawful employment.
Ruska was the primary target of an 18-month investigation codenamed Project Newton. Ruska was originally accused of operating an underground laboratory (UGL) that manufactured injectable and oral anabolic steroids. The Hamilton Police Service arrested the 2007 OPA Ontario Provincial Championships heavyweight champion along with several other individuals “loosely affiliated with the bodybuilding community in April 2011.
While Ruska was primarily linked to anabolic steroid distribution, large quantities of recreational drugs distributed by other defendants in the Project Newton investigation were also seized. Police estimated that the street value of the steroids and crystal methamphetamine alone was approximately $1 million and $3 million, respectively.
Ruska had owned two sports supplement stores as well. These included Herc’s Nutrition in Upper James and Premier Nutrition in Grimsby. The stores were reportedly used to facilitate the sale of anabolic steroids and recreational drugs.
Ruska was originally charged with sixteen violations of the Canada Criminal Code and Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) including “conspiracy to traffic and possession for the purpose of trafficking anabolic steroids, methamphetamine, cocaine, ecstasy, marijuana and ketamine” and the “production of anabolic steroids.”
The Crown dropped all but the four charges to which Ruska pleaded guilty.
Wong, D. (July 14, 2012). Bodybuilder Reiner Ruska jailed five years. Retrieved from http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/760531–bodybuilder-reiner-ruska-jailed-five-years