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Are there a lot of gangs in Vancouver?

Are there a lot of gangs in Vancouver?

Old Jul 8, 11, 12:01 pm
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Are there a lot of gangs in Vancouver?

Seems like the news in Vancouver has a lot of stories of gang violence. What's going on? I thought that Canada was peaceful and the U.S. was violent. Vancouver seems more violent than Seattle although I think Detroit beats Windsor.
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Old Jul 8, 11, 3:36 pm
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There are gangs mainly or almost wholly involved in drugs (growing and processing marijuana) and supplying it to the very large and healthy U.S. market, and smuggling in firearms and other drugs (e.g., cocaine) from down south to sell and distribute up here. Violence seems to be almost wholly directed at rival gangs and their associates, though you do get innocent bystanders caught int he proverbial cross-fire.

FWIW, most gangs and their associates are mostly based and operate in the suburbs surrounding Vancouver but they do like to come into town to dine (nothing worth going out in the 'burbs for) and party, where they get shot at by other gangs.

This journalist has made a career following gang violence in town.
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Old Jul 8, 11, 4:10 pm
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Yes, it's Vancouver's dirty little secret which the Chamber of Commerce and the Tourism Bureau try to downplay.

Is it worse than other big cities ? It depends which cities. Certainly not as bad as (parts of) LA, Miami etc. but likely the worst in Canada due to the drug trade mentioned above. There are other gangs concerned mainly with ethnic or sectarian violence and mayhem, but these tend to be localized in particular areas.

It's probably only a concern to tourists who go to certain nightclubs or who are wandering about in some suburbs late at night, and even then it's a remote possibility.

See: http://communities.canada.com/vancou...p/default.aspx
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Old Jul 8, 11, 9:57 pm
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In Vancouver, typical low-level drug dealers are typically not in gangs. So they guy your neighbour is buying his weed from isn't in a gang - However the gangs own the drug trade and distribution above.
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Old Jul 9, 11, 1:27 am
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Compared to TO, the gang problem in YVR is a love-in.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 10:39 am
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Well, I didn't watch tv or read any news, while I was there. So the city seemed peaceful enough to me.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 10:47 am
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Originally Posted by Braindrain View Post
Compared to TO, the gang problem in YVR is a love-in.
Huh? 23 killings in 2011? That is pretty tame compared to any U.S. city of that size.

http://www.cbc.ca/toronto/features/homicide2011/
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Old Jul 10, 11, 3:57 pm
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Originally Posted by LuvAirFrance View Post
That is pretty tame compared to any U.S. city of that size.
The murder rate in Vancouver is very low, and nearly all of those murders are drug dealers killing each other.

However, the property crime rate is very high - Amongst the highest in North America. This is largely due to drug addicts stealing to feed their habit.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 5:35 pm
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I was thinking today and wondering if there's a lot of attempting to smuggle drugs across the international border like there is over the Mexico-U.S. border. And does this mean that those of us who want to visit Canada are going to be in for tougher conditions from the border guards. I crossed at Blaine in 2009, and I saw no sign then that they were expecting contraband.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 6:53 pm
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Originally Posted by LuvAirFrance View Post
I was thinking today and wondering if there's a lot of attempting to smuggle drugs across the international border like there is over the Mexico-U.S. border. And does this mean that those of us who want to visit Canada are going to be in for tougher conditions from the border guards. I crossed at Blaine in 2009, and I saw no sign then that they were expecting contraband.
The smuggled drugs travel south from Canada into the USA.

The smuggled guns come north from the USA into Canada.

Generally this contraband crosses the border at the "truck crossings" so this is where you see the enforcement coming into Canada. Canadians aren't generally too concerned about drugs coming into the country from the USA.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 7:04 pm
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Originally Posted by gglave View Post
The smuggled drugs travel south from Canada into the USA.

The smuggled guns come north from the USA into Canada.

Generally this contraband crosses the border at the "truck crossings" so this is where you see the enforcement coming into Canada. Canadians aren't generally too concerned about drugs coming into the country from the USA.
Yeh, I can see that. Apparently this is somehow tied to the civil war in Mexico. And another bit that surprised me is the role of Sikh men in this. I wonder how many countries have gangs full of young men who are Sikhs. I take it that Sikhs poured into B.C. when the Indian government cracked down after Indira Gandhi was assassinated. Maybe they were goondas in Punjab before they came.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 8:43 pm
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Originally Posted by LuvAirFrance View Post
Yeh, I can see that. Apparently this is somehow tied to the civil war in Mexico. And another bit that surprised me is the role of Sikh men in this. I wonder how many countries have gangs full of young men who are Sikhs. I take it that Sikhs poured into B.C. when the Indian government cracked down after Indira Gandhi was assassinated. Maybe they were goondas in Punjab before they came.
Well, you're not really 'allowed' to discuss the issue of race when you discuss gangs in Vancouver, but yes, they did at one time have a south asian component. This has mostly faded away in the past ten years or so.

Most of the south Asian gang members in Vancouver were from the punjab, but this is only because most of the south asian immigrants to Vancouver are from the punjab. Most of the boys in gangs followed a similar pattern - "Little Princes" who lacked discipline at home who fell for the lure of fast cars, loose (western) women and cash. Most of their parents (and the community) turned a blind eye at first.
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Old Jul 10, 11, 9:50 pm
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Originally Posted by gglave View Post
Well, you're not really 'allowed' to discuss the issue of race when you discuss gangs in Vancouver, but yes, they did at one time have a south asian component. This has mostly faded away in the past ten years or so.

Most of the south Asian gang members in Vancouver were from the punjab, but this is only because most of the south asian immigrants to Vancouver are from the punjab. Most of the boys in gangs followed a similar pattern - "Little Princes" who lacked discipline at home who fell for the lure of fast cars, loose (western) women and cash. Most of their parents (and the community) turned a blind eye at first.
Early on, we had immigrants from many continents, and they tried to hang onto old ways. But little by little we got Somali gangs, Latino gangs, Hmong gangs. Maybe they picked up on America's bizarre worship of ghetto culture, and they noticed the presence of gangs in that culture. So if they wanted to be "cool", they needed their own gang since the African American kids didn't want any immigrants in their gangs. Guess that was racism, too.
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Old Jul 18, 11, 10:21 am
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The murder rate for Vancouver is roughly the same as Seattle. So if you consider Seattle a hotbed of crime...
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