Known in the local press as the “Salisbury Sopranos,” the Tingley crime family is not what one would call discreet. Their compound, located in Salisbury, just outside of Moncton, N.B., is clearly marked by a large, purple billboard, which, aside from the skulls in the background, wouldn’t look out of place on a Nevada highway. “The Tingley Compound,” it reads, “What you see here . . . what you do here . . . what you hear here . . . STAYS HERE.”
Not any more. Last week, 100 RCMP officers stormed the compound and several other locations, arresting eight Tingley family members and laying 57 charges, including “conspiracy to traffic in cocaine, OxyContin, marijuana, contraband tobacco, weapons and firearms, and being members of an organized crime group,” say the police. The arrests capped a 14-month-long investigation which the police say was dogged by a lack of co-operation from witnesses who were intimidated by the notorious Tingley twins, 54-year-old brothers Roger and Rodney, who head up the clan. “Nobody wanted to mess with them,” says RCMP Sgt. Maurice Comeau.
The Tingleys have become well-known locally for their escalating dispute with another local family, the Hoppers. In one incident earlier this year, Rodney’s son Michael Tingley was charged with threatening and assaulting one of the Hoppers. Leading up to the investigation, the Tingleys grabbed the RCMP’s attention after a number of Hopper-owned properties were mysteriously destroyed by fire (though none of the latest charges are related to arson).
Bringing down the family “is a big victory for us and the community at large,” says Comeau. “It’s well overdue.” The locals are breathing a little easier, with the Tingleys behind bars and potentially facing lengthy prison sentences. As for the ominous billboard, that’s been taken down too.