EDITOR’S NOTE: Gurmeet Mathroo pled guilty to dangerous driving and received a conditional discharge. The Crown stayed the proceedings on the charge of obstructing a police officer.
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Surrey RCMP say two men with ties to the Lower Mainland gang conflict have been arrested.
The two men, according to a news release on Wednesday (Jan. 9), were arrested in connection with “an incident of failing to stop for police” which happened in the fall of 2018.
Both men are from Surrey, according to RCMP.
Gurmeet Mathroo, 19, has been charged with one count of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and one count of obstructing a police officer.
Anhad Virk, 21, is charged with one count of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and one count of obstructing a police officer.
Virk, RCMP said, is a “current Provincial Tactical Enforcement Priority target.”
Police said PTEP “is a multi-agency law enforcement information-sharing strategy that co-ordinates intelligence as it relates to gang and organized crime targets.”
Mathroo and Virk appeared in court on Tuesday (Jan. 8). Mathroo, according to police, has since been released. Virk remains in custody, RCMP said.
Mathroo, according to Court Services Online, is next due in Surrey Provincial Court on Jan. 22.
Online court records show Virk has prior convictions, dating back to 2016, for breach of probation, uttering threats and assaulting a peace officer, related to incidents in Merritt and Port Moody.
The convictions in Merritt were related to an incident on June 22, 2017 in which police alleged Virk became aggressive toward police and discovered he had a knife, reported Merritt Herald.
The newspaper reported that after spending the night in police custody, Virk was facing even more charges.
“Police are charging Virk with two counts of assaulting a police officer after he spit on several RCMP members and punched one in the head,” the newspaper wrote at the time.
“He kept creating disturbances in cells and [officers] had to go in. He was covering the cameras, he was trying to harm himself,” RCMP Const. Tracy Dunsmore told the Herald.
“When they got in there he would react and attack.”
In April of 2018, Virk was sentenced to more than seven months in jail and three years of probation after being convicted of assaulting a peace officer with a weapon, assault, theft, uttering threats and breaching his bail conditions, related to incidents in Surrey.
Police said Surrey RCMP Gang Enforcement Team (SGET) officers “were strategically targeting individuals known to police with associations to the Lower Mainland gang conflict.”
RCMP said that officers “attempted to stop a vehicle they suspected was involved in drug trafficking.”
“The vehicle failed to stop and fled from police,” Surrey RCMP said in the new release.
Police said SGET officers continued to investigate and on Jan. 7, “charges were approved and arrest warrants issued for two men who are alleged to be the occupants of the vehicle which fled from police on October 25th.”
“This investigation is an example of Surrey RCMP’s diligence and dedication in investigating and interdicting individuals involved in the gang lifestyle in the Lower Mainland,” said Superintendent Shawn Gill, community services officer for the Surrey RCMP, in a release.
“Public safety remains the Surrey RCMP’s number one priority, our investigations do not simply end when a vehicle drives away,” Gill added.