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Vernon  

Greeks' Drugs & Guns

Vernon RCMP pulled out the hardware Tuesday seized in connection with last weekend's big raid on an organized crime group called the Greeks.

The Greeks were put out of business following a number of raids in the Vernon area. So far, there have been 10 arrests including two women. They're facing drug and murder charges. Police allege the Greeks controlled the flow of drugs -- especially cocaine in the North Okanagan and have connections all over the province not to mention Alberta. Police say they're anticipating more charges against the accused and are looking for another suspect for a total of 11. Some are accused in the murder of David Barry Marniuk. The 45-year-old Vernon resident went missing two years ago. Police are also investigating the deaths of seven other Vernon residents -- all linked to the drug trade.

On Tuesday, police showed off some of the goods seized during the raids including guns, drugs, and cash.

The drugs included four kilos of cocaine and more than 25 pounds of BC bud. A pound will fetch anywhere between $1,600 and $2,200 on the street. There were bags of cash -- more than $200,000. The weapons included a sawed-off shotgun and biker paraphernalia linked to the Hells Angels. One T-shirt read "Be silent or Be Silenced."

Police also put the suspects' pictures on display for the media and their tattoos, which according to police are significant in the underworld. One particular tattoo sported by some of the accused read: EMA. According to police, EMA means 'Family' in Greek with an Omega symbol at the bottom signifying 'forever'.

Most of the accused are due back in court in late June for their bail hearings.


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