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Concerns of retaliation after gangster gunned down outside wedding

A well-known gangster was shot and killed outside a banquet hall in South Vancouver Sunday, sparking concerns his associates may seek revenge.

It happened around 1:30 a.m. at Fraser View Banquet Hall, which confirmed to CTV News it was hosting a wedding at the time. 

“We know there was an event at that banquet hall. Despite this being a targeted incident, a gang-related incident, this was very concerning – any innocent bystander could’ve been in the crossfire,” Vancouver Police Department Const. Tania Visintin told CTV News.

Police did not identify the victim and have remained relatively tight-lipped on the investigation.

The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C., the provincial anti-gang agency, confirmed to CTV News the victim was 28-year-old Amarpreet Samra.

Samra had been part of public warnings in 2021 and in 2022, in which the CFSEU-BC identified specific gang members believed to be linked to recent violence and advised people they were putting themselves in danger by associating with the men. 

“There is the possibility that there is somebody from a rival gang in the near vicinity who may be looking for an opportunity to take an act of violence,” CFSEU-BC Sgt. Brenda Winpenny said in May 2021.

Another man in the 2021 public warning, Meninder Dhaliwal, was shot and killed in a brazen daylight shooting in Whistler July 2022.

Rob Gordon, a criminologist at SFU, said this illustrates the accuracy of the police warnings but also their limitations.

“You can’t ostracize somebody for a long period of time – it’s impossible to do that. The only way that this fellow could’ve avoided being shot at is to leave town,” Gordon said.

In 2015, when Samra was 21 years old, he was charged with attempted murder for a shooting at Strawberry Hill Elementary.

A few years later, when he was 25, he was accused of kidnapping someone and there was a Canada-wide warrant for his arrest.

Gordon believes the public warnings are an indication Samra may have been on a hit list for some time.

“That is the function of the long-term memory of people involved in these conflicts, they don’t give up until they get to their target,” he said.

Now, there are concerns that Samra’s associates will fire back.

“We know this happens time and time again. When there is a targeted shooting of this nature in the B.C. gang conflict, we know retaliation will occur. All of this is very concerning and it definitely puts the public at risk,” Visintin said.

Anyone with information on the latest shooting is asked to contact the VPD’s homicide unit. Top Stories

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