VANCOUVER -- Authorities have released the names and photos of six alleged gang members believed to pose "a significant risk" to public safety in B.C.'s Lower Mainland.

The Vancouver Police Department identified the men Monday, following weeks of escalating gang violence in the region that has seen several brazen shootings committed in busy public spaces.

“Police are expecting this violence to continue and to potentially escalate,” said Chief Const. Adam Palmer.

“We believe these gangsters pose a significant risk to the safety of the public.”

The men are 35-year-old Garinder Deo, 38-year-old Harjit Deo, 38-year-old Barinder Dhaliwal, 28-year-old Meninder Dhaliwal, 22-year-old Ekene Anigbo, and 41-year-old Damion Ryan.

Authorities did not reveal where the alleged gangsters live, but said they all have links to Vancouver.

Police also confirmed the two Deos and the two Dhaliwals are brothers, and the latter two are related to Harpreet Singh Dhaliwal, who was fatally shot outside a Coal Harbour restaurant in April.

“I want to make it clear that today’s announcement is not about naming and shaming,” Palmer said.

“Police intelligence leads us to believe that the individuals that we’ve identified today may be targeted by rival gang members in the coming days weeks and months.”

The chief also announced Taskforce Threshold, a new anti-gang team formed last week from operational and investigative divisions to combat the increasing violence.

And that taskforce, which Deputy Chief Const. Fiona Wilson said is designed to give “access to the right people, (and) the right resources, at the right times,” has already, police said, stopped a gang hit in the planning stages.

Investigators say two people were arrested, one with a firearm, after police received a call about a suspicious vehicle in South Vancouver with gas canisters inside.

Police indicated charges are in the works but would not give further details.

Chow told a news conference police plan to increase their numbers and visibility in the community, especially around the restaurants, gyms, and other public spaces that known gangsters frequent.

“To be frank,” Chow said, “I want to make it really uncomfortable for these gangsters here in Vancouver.”

While the alleged gangsters aren’t currently wanted for crimes, Palmer, who cautioned the “top six” is by no means an exhaustive list, urged any member of the public or business owner to call 911 if they see any of the men, and said officers will be dispatched to talk to them.

And the chief promised what he called a “professionally aggressive” approach to target those involved in gang crime.

“Our investigators will seize your cars, will seize your homes, will seize your apartments, and other valuables that you’ve gained through the proceeds of crime,” Palmer warned.