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Province to crack down on illegal firearms

The B.C. government is hiring more police forces, adding more prosecutors and working toward implementing stricter laws to crack down on gang violence in the Lower Mainland.

The B.C. government is hiring more police forces, adding more prosecutors and working toward implementing stricter laws to crack down on gang violence in the Lower Mainland.

The announcement, made on Friday, came in the wake of a rash of targeted shootings that left five young men dead.

Premier Gordon Campbell promised to bring in 168 new police officers and 10 new prosecutors over the next two years.

“Recent gang violence has been both shocking and appalling, and British Columbians have had enough,” he said.

“We’re adding more officers to investigate, arrest and get violent criminals off the street, and ... more prosecutors to put criminals behind bars.”

“These additional resources ... mean we can dramatically increase our efforts to get these gangs off the street,” said solicitor general John van Dongen.

The plan also includes a pledge to crack down on illegal guns, forbid the use of armoured vehicles and body armour, build more jails, enforce stricter penalties and create a new gang hotline and incentive program for witnesses.

Campbell added that he’s committed to implementing recommendations from The Illegal Movement Of Firearms In British Columbia report, which was released on Friday.

It would include, among other things, more resources for investigation and enforcement, stricter guidelines for prosecution, and better training and education programs.

 
 
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