A Winnipeg criminologist says a significant drug bust last week could have a ripple effect, leading to more crime.
On Tuesday, Dec. 10, Manitoba RCMP announced raids executed a week earlier led to the largest meth bust in the province’s history, with $6.5 million worth of drugs seized.
Frank Cormier, head of the sociology and criminology department at the University of Manitoba, said the price of street drugs will likely rise as a result, which could lead to two possible outcomes.
“If there are people who are desperate to feed their addiction, then they may actually be pushed into committing even more crime to try to support their habit,” Cormier said.
“On the other hand, if there is a difficulty in getting access to certain drugs, that might be an incentive that some people need to try to get off drugs.”
Eight homes in Manitoba and one in Calgary were raided last Wednesday by 150 officers. Eleven people face more than 60 charges.
Police said the Hell’s Angels, local street gangs and Asian organized crime were all involved in the network, which was being investigated for 16 months.
Cormier said it’s becoming more common for organized crime groups to work together.
“Like any other business sometimes it’s found that it’s more efficient and you can run your business better if you cooperate,” he said.
“You contract out some of the work and somebody can do it more efficiently than you can.”