Early Thursday morning the Toronto Police executed a raid that included over 800 officers to take down an international gang. The raid was part of Project Patton, which began operation nine months ago.
During the raid, the police were able to arrest 70 people related to the gang, Five Point Generalz. The Toronto police chief, Mark Saunders, said that he expects that with the knowledge the police have there will be more arrests made.
MEDIA ALERT: This morning we have executed 50+ search warrants in Toronto, Durham, York, Peel, targeting an alleged criminal organization. More than 800 officers, inc. surrounding police agencies, were involved. Follow #ProjectPatton @TorontoPolice for updates ^mg
Saunders assured that those who were arrested made up a large portion of the gang. He also credited many of the shootings in the Weston Road and Lawrence Avenue West area to their activity.
The police chief said, "when we talk about gunplay in the city, the street gangs play a huge — a massive — role in that type of activity.” He also informed the media that the police have conducted more than 50 searches in multiple areas of the GTA.
Shooting in Toronto are up this year, reaching 194 shootings so far in 2018 compared to 160 incidents this time in 2017. Saunders has described the gang as "thugs" who use gun violence to hurt others.
Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders says the gang is connected to several shootings in the city. #ProjectPatton
The raid allowed police to obtain numerous guns being held by members of the gang, as well as drugs. They will be releasing more detailed information about what was obtained on Friday, June 22.
Five Point Generalz is connected and linked to crimes across Toronto. They are also connected to drugs and gun crimes across Canada, the United States, and in the Caribbean.