Edmonton police say a violent gang from British Columbia has started operating in the city.
In two separate raids last week, police seized large quantities of pure cocaine along with $8,000 in cash, body armour, a handgun and a high-power assault rifle that they said are connected to the Vancouver-based Independent Soldiers. Police found the gang's branded clothing at both sites.
"It's spread from south Vancouver to Kelowna and then into Calgary, and now we're starting to find members here," an undercover police officer told reporters.
He added that the gang only has roughly a dozen members in the city now, but officers expect that number to grow as the group takes advantage of the province's booming economy to sell drugs and guns.
The dangerous group's growth in the city is worrisome, he said.
"Obviously they're into commercial cocaine, and firearms that we located in these particular investigations are a lot of firepower," he said.
"What's unique about this group is that they like to be in the public and wear their colours to display their association with each other and the Independent Soldiers," he added. The gang's colours are red and black.
Police have issued warrants for Bradley Wayne Fitzpatrick, 35, Michael Stanley, 20, and Landon John Borkowski, 23, in connection with the raids. All three face drugs and weapons charges.
The officer said arrests probably wouldn't affect the gang's operations in the city, as they will likely send in more members to compensate and keep up with an increasing demand for drugs.