A man police allegeis a member of a feared gang called the Greeks has pleaded guilty to involvement in four drug-related slayings in Vernon, B.C.
Andre Raymond, 25, who appeared in the B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Thursday, admitted to one count of first-degree murder in the death of Ron Thom and three counts of manslaughter in the deaths of David Marniuk, Thomas Bryce and Robert Hewison.
Raymond was sentenced to life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 25 years.
RCMP said the four deaths were part of acase involving seven homicides in just over a year between April 2004 and May 2005. It's the largest case they've handled in the Okanagan city of about 36,000 residents.
RCMP said they believe the killings were part of an on-going gang war over control of street drugs.
Sgt. Al Haslett, wholed the police investigation, said Raymond was just one of the people involved in the gang killings.
"Andre Raymond was a member of the Greek organization. They were involved in homicides, high-echelon level drug trafficking as well as controlling street-level trafficking," the undercover cop told CBC News.
"They were involved in every type of criminal activity imaginable."
In April of this year, Ken Beck pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the Hewison killing and was sentenced to life in prison with no parole for 10 years.
Five other men — Sheldon O'Donnell, Leslie Podolski, Dale Sipes, Peter Manolakos and Douglas Brownell — are also charged with murder after a total of seven men were shot or beaten to death.
Haslett said police are promising more charges.
"Mr. Raymond did not work alone on any of these homicides," he said.
Andrew Yeo, manager of a local shelter called Upper Room Mission, said there's still drug-related violence on the streets.
"People fear the Greeks. That's a name that absolutely struck fear in people's hearts," he said.
"People walk into the Mission with a bruised eye or broken arm and you just know what [it is]about," Yeo said.