Montreal police have formed a new specialized squad of 66 officers who will be committed to battling street gangs and emerging criminal trends, the force said Monday.

The Eclipse Squad will assist existing patrol units including those that patrol Montreal's subway systems and streets.

The squad will target street gang activity, drug trafficking and cybercrime, offering a wide range of resources, police Chief Yvan Delorme said at a news conference. "Those police officers are older, and more experienced," he said.

The Eclipse Squad will also increase police visibility on the ground.

The squad will receive $37.5 million over five years in money previously announced by the federal government, said Jacques Dupuis, Quebec's public security minister.

At least 46 officers will be deployed immediately, with 20 more joining the squad in the fall.

With files from the Canadian Press