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Premier Campbell takes on gang violence

Premier Gordon Campbell said yesterday he's going to "rededicate prosecutors" and "add additional police officers" to fight gang violence.

Speaking to reporters after a fiery performance in the legislature, Campbell said details about those additional police officers are going to be released in the next couple days.

But it's unclear as to whether that initiative will have any extra money attached to it.

"We're going to be redeploying resources to focus on this activity specifically," said Campbell. "If there are additional resources required beyond that, obviously they're available in contingencies."

Nevertheless, responding to NDP attacks on his government's crime-fighting record, Campbell declared in the house, "gangs in British Columbia should know this: If you're here, we're coming after you, and you're not acceptable in our neighbourhoods, in our communities, anywhere in our province."

A string of brazen shootings erupted across the Lower Mainland this month resulting in the deaths of alleged gang associates Kevin LeClair, Raphael Baldini, James Erickson and Brianna Kinnear.

Kitsilano shooting victim Matin Pouyan is also believed to have gang ties.

Sean Holman is editor of Public Eye Online, legislative reporter for 24 Hours Vancouver, and an occasional contributor to The Tyee.

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