A crackdown on two notorious gangs allegedly operating in Toronto’s north end has resulted in more than 70 arrests and a haul of guns, drugs and diamonds.

The two gangs, known as the Falstaff Crips and the Five Point Generals, “have terrorized neighbourhoods in which they operate,” Toronto police Chief William Blair told a news conference yesterday.

He said the gangs were allegedly involved in trafficking drugs and guns in the area, as well as a significant amount of violence.

After a nine-month investigation dubbed Project Corral, more than 1,000 police officers conducted about 100 pre-dawn raids early yesterday in Toronto and Ottawa. The co-ordinated raids involved officers from numerous police services across Ontario, including about 340 tactical officers.

They arrested 71 people and seized 19 firearms and at least $30,000 in cash, as well as body armour, vehicles and diamonds. Also seized were drugs including cocaine, crack cocaine, marijuana, hashish oil and more than 10,000 ecstasy pills.

Blair said campaigns like Project Corral do have an impact, although it takes much time and effort to help a community recover from the effects of violence and intimidation and the people responsible for creating it.

“When we put them in jail, we are making our community safer,” he said.

“Two very well-established, violent gangs that have been operating in our city for some time, they have been responsible for a significant amount of the violence and the fear that exists in our communities,” Blair said.

“I think we have a responsibility to disrupt and dismantle the activities of such well-organized groups.”

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