VANCOUVER — The Vancouver police and British Columbia's integrated anti-gang agency say they have worked together to dismantle a "violent crime group."
Vancouver Supt. Mike Porteous says seven members of the Gill Group, including its leader, 21-year-old Taqdir Gill, have been arrested and face conspiracy and weapons charges.
Gill, who remains in custody, is charged with six offences, including conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit arson, extortion and weapons offences.
Two 17-year-old youths and four men, ranging in age from 19 to 23, also face conspiracy and weapons charges.
Porteous says the Gill Group also worked on a contract basis with bigger crime groups, although he would not name those groups, saying that formed part of the investigation.
Porteous says the Gill Group gang was its own separate cell but was working more on a contract basis for other crime groups. pic.twitter.com/8NVP98Hfmn— Lasia Kretzel (@lkretzel1130) May 17, 2018
Many of the arrests occurred last October after what police said was a spike in criminal activity across Metro Vancouver, but Porteous says the murder conspiracy charges were laid more recently.
"There were a lot of shootings and violence associated to this group," he says.
"I think in the six months leading up to (the arrests) we had to deal with this group approximately 16 times and then after the arrests, the types of incidents fell down to a couple."
The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of British Columbia, which investigates gang-related crime in the province, says in a release that its collaboration with Vancouver police and other Lower Mainland police agencies is critical.
"The co-ordinated and strategic engagement, disruption, and enforcement efforts that we have collectively undertaken since the start of this joint operation will continue as part of our long-term regional strategy," says Assistant Commissioner Kevin Hackett.