Three high-ranking members of Aldergrove’s 856 gang have been arrested and B.C.’s gang unit has shut down their drug making facility at a mansion on acreage in Langley.
The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit seized $400,000 worth of cocaine, meth, heroin, oxycontin and plenty of drug-making paraphernalia from a 10,000 square foot mansion in the 4600 block of 236 Street.
The home, cut up into apartments, housed a 20-ton press to make the cocaine bricks and other illicit drugs and paraphernalia.
The three Langley men arrested are aged 23, 25 and 47. They have been released pending charges of trafficking, said Sgt. Lindsey Houghton at a press conference at RCMP headquarters in Surrey on Wednesday.
Among the drugs, police seized 44 kg of super buffer, which is used to dilute cocaine, so they can “double their profit.”
The buffer is actually pig dewormer, he said.
Acting on a tip, the CFSEU launched an investigation into the alleged drug trafficking activities in early July. The gang unit started investigating the 856 gang’s operation in Langley acting on a tip that certain individuals were trafficking out of this huge home, said Houghton.
On July 22, the gang unit arrested one man outside the alleged drug home on 236 Street. A search of the man resulted in police seizing a significant quantity of coke and meth.
While officers were on the scene, two other suspects arrived in a vehicle, said Houghton. One was arrested and the other fled on foot.
That led to police closing down the area for a time, and RCMP bringing in the dog unit and using Air One to help. That man was found and arrested several hours later.
With the help of Langley RCMP, the CFSEU executed a search warrant of the building on 236 Street, finding what they believe to be a drug processing and repackaging facility.
The 856 gang, named after the telephone prefix for Aldergrove, began a decade ago “as a bunch of young punks and thugs in Aldergrove doing street level drug dealing,” said Houghton.
But they have grown, and continue to recruit new members from Aldergrove, he confirmed.
They aren’t at the level of other gangs in the area like the Red Scorpions but have become the dominant drug trafficking gang in the Yukon, Yellowknife, parts of Alberta and Fort St. John.
“They will muscle their way into a market that is kind of untapped and take it over,” said Houghton.
But this seizure is one of the largest CFSEU has done and police believe this will put a big dent in the 856 gang’s business and operations.
“Anytime you can take $400,000 worth of drugs out of their business, it’s going to hurt them,” he said.
The price of cocaine has almost doubled though. Houghton held up a brick of cocaine that had been seized and said it was worth $60,000. Not long ago, that same brick was worth $35,000.
“It’s supply and demand,” he said.