The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. (CFSEU-BC) is B.C.'s anti-gang police force. The agency released its second annual community report this week.

‘Significant decline’ in gang killings: CFSEU annual report

Community report from anti-gang police unit notes more big cases go to trial in 2015

A recent drop in gang violence now has B.C.’s anti-gang police unit looking to the courts for closure on several major outstanding cases.

Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit chief officer Kevin Hackett said the “significant decline” in organized crime homicides comes after a series of high-profile investigations leading to charges, as well as new initiatives to prevent or reduce gang membership.

His comments were published Monday in the unit’s 2014 annual community report. It can be found online at bc-anti-gang.com.

The number of gang-related killings in B.C. fell to 13 last year from 18 in 2012 and has been cut by almost two-thirds from the 36 gang murders committed in 2009.

Nearly 100 organized crime figures or gang-related individuals were arrested and charged last year with more than 270 offences in close to 30 B.C. communities, Hackett said.

The report’s release came after the province announced policing cuts that will pare the CFSEU budget by $2.8 million.

Much public attention has focused on the Surrey Six murder trial, which concluded in early July. A decision is expected to be handed down Oct. 2 in the case against two of the men accused of killing two innocents along with four other targeted victims.

But a separate murder conspiracy trial for Red Scorpions gang member Jamie Bacon is slated to begin next May for his alleged role in the Surrey Six slayings.

And there could be two other major gang murder trials in 2015 as well.

A trial is expected to begin next year in Kelowna, where Jonathan Bacon was gunned down three years ago. Jujhar Khun-Khun, Michael Kerry Hunter Jones and Jason Thomas McBride face first-degree murder charges as well as four counts each of attempted murder.

CFSEU officials say next year could also see the start of a trial against Cory Vallee, accused in two murders – the 2009 shooting in Langley of Red Scorpion Kevin LeClair and the 2008 shooting in Burnaby of Jonathan Barber, who was mistakenly targeted because he was installing a stereo in a car owned by a Bacon brother.

Vallee, who was arrested in August in Mexico and quickly returned to B.C., also faces conspiracy charges in relation to a UN Gang plot to kill the Bacon brothers.

Hackett said a joint CFSEU-IHIT investigation also led to murder conspiracy guilty pleas last year against six UN Gang members and associates.

He said the gangsters had been “ruthlessly hunting” members of the Bacon crime group in 2008-09, a period during which police efforts also prevented at least two more murders.

“They displayed blatant disregard for public safety in what Crown counsel referred to as ‘human safaris’ while they targeted their rivals.”

The six received sentences of seven to 14 years each and although UN Gang leader Barzan Tilli-Choli could be out late in 2018 due to time served, he is expected to then be deported to Iraq.

Hackett was optimistic the CFSEU’s edgy End Gang Life campaign (endganglife.ca) will help persuade more gang members to reform. It plays on the emotions of gangsters with imagery of loved ones left behind after they’re dead.

The annual report includes statistics on the ethnicity of gang murder victims, where the bodies are typically found (31 per cent inside a car, 20 per cent inside a residence), as well as seasonal patterns in gang violence.

Jonathan Bacon was killed outside a Kelowna hotel three years ago.The murder trial of his three accused killers is slated to begin next year.

Just Posted

Cause of Kitkatla seaplane crash released

TSB report on seaplane crash during a water landing in May 2016, Inland Air has since changed policy

UPDATE: Coal train derailment near New Hazelton

CN reports no injuries or dangerous goods involved after coal train derailment in Northern B.C.

Rampage beat Quesnel to wrap up the season

The win puts Prince Rupert in second place in the CIHL

Kurka keeps thing official

The longtime hockey referee has been on the ice in Prince Rupert for more than 30 years

Rampaging toward the playoffs

The Prince Rupert Rampage beat the Terrace River Kings 8-5 on Jan. 20

VIDEO: New whale rescue equipment comes to Rupert

Fisheries officers took to the water to practice saving stranded whales

Carriers wanted for the Northern View

We have open routes for carriers all over Prince Rupert

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Crown seeks 4.5 years jail for B.C. woman convicted of counselling tax evasion

Debbie Anderson the latest from group to face jail for teaching debunked ‘natural person’ theory

Brother of B.C. teen killed by stray bullet says the death left a void

Alfred Wong, 15, was gunned down in Vancouver while on his way home from dinner with his family

Movie filmed in Castlegar B.C. opens Friday

Hollow in the Land starring Dianna Agron will be playing in select cinemas.

Cougar window shops at Banff grocery store

An RCMP officer spots a cougar outside an Alberta grocery store

Police fear fewer fentanyl imports don’t signal the end of the overdose crisis

RCMP say it’s just as likely that criminal are getting more clever

Most Read