Red Scorpions gang bust like 'Whack-A-Mole,' expert says
B.C. drug trafficking gang appears intent on expanding east to Alberta, police say
A Canadian gang expert says the arrests of four people in Alberta affiliated with a B.C. gang won't put a big dent in its operations.
Search warrants were executed last week in Airdrie, Red Deer and Calgary, leading to the arrest of one member of the Red Scorpions and three associate members, RCMP said Monday.
The gang is alleged to have been involved in a case known as the Surrey Six, where half a dozen people were killed in a high-rise condo in 2007.
Red Scorpion gang members likely feel the heat is on in B.C.'s lower mainland, gang expert Micheal Chettleburgh said.
“When you have intense police suppression focused on a gang, it creates a displacement effect,” he said.
The four people arrested in Alberta are facing a number of drug and firearms charges.
“Demonstrated by the weapons seized, it is clear that these individuals were willing and able to resort to violence,” said Staff Sgt. Martin Schiavetta, of the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team (ALERT).
But Chettleburgh said the arrests won't stop the gang.
“The work of law enforcement is, to some extent, a bit of a game of Whack-A-Mole, that you might take out a guy here, two guys there, but there are still a lot of people who want to be part of this story of the Red Scorpions.”
The Red Scorpions made their name with dial-a-dope operations, so it's likely they moved east to expand that network, Chettleburgh said.
Dial-a-dope operations are typically set up to facilitate the sale of a drugs through a phone call or text. Clients request a product, a meeting location is chosen, and drugs are exchanged for money with a drug runner.The meetings are usually held in public places.
“Going over to Alberta, which is perceived as rich in terms of the resource industry, is a logical extension of your operation,” he said.
Police say there could be additional charges and arrests.