Jagdeep Singh Mangat

Articles by Jagdeep Singh Mangat

jagdeep-copyGangs and Drugs – Probing the Root Causes of the Shootings in Surrey

with Dave Diewert

Volcano: Since the beginning of March, there have been close to 30 shooting incidents in Surrey, and the police say it has to do with groups fighting over control of the drug trade. Are these simply street gangs involved in turf wars? Jagdeep: In the 1980s and 90s when I was involved in the gang scene in East Vancouver, there were street gangs protecting and controlling geographical areas and managing the street level drug trade within those areas. At that time, the street gangs were working for larger, more sophisticated criminal organizations, and at all levels there was a fixed command and control structure. But that’s not what’s happening these days. Now there tend to be crews with a lot more flexibility, and they don’t try to control geographical areas so much as control drug lines or phone networks of drug supply and delivery. It’s a communication-based system where people operating the phones get calls for the product, and drivers deliver it to the specified location, and at the end of the shift the cash is brought in. The fights in Surrey are over these drug lines and the wealth they generate; phones with good contacts and access to customers are worth thousands of dollars. (…)