What does 2013 hold for the world of organized crime?
Published Tuesday, January 8, 2013 9:40PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, January 8, 2013 9:41PM EST
Just one week into 2013 and police are investigating yet another shooting related to the world of organized crime, after a man linked to biker gangs was shot twice at a plumbing store on Van Horne Ave. in Outremont Monday.
That shooting comes after 2012 closed with 18 murders in Montreal related to organized crime – and that doesn’t count the many attempted murders.
The victims are often shot in public places: cafes, bars, and even in the street.
As power struggles for criminal dominance in the city continue, some Montrealers are growing concerned that someone innocent could be caught in the crossfire.
Organized crime expert Maria Mourani said it's messy now because so many are jockeying for power.
“The Italian Mob has links with the bikers and some links with the street gangs. So all these people - all these criminal actors - they want to take more territory, more criminal market,” she said.
They each have different strategies when it comes to violence, she said.
The Mafia tries to work "clean" to avoid political or police pressure, she added.
“They don't want witnesses, they don't want to have collateral damage.They care about all this, so usually they're going to kill you in the (driveway) of your home, where there aren't too many people,” she explained.
Street gangs are the most brazen and dangerous and bikers are in the middle: more precise, but they act in public, she said.
Mourani points to the last biker war, when in 1995, 11-year-old Daniel Desrochers was an innocent victim, fatally injured when a car bomb exploded.
And now, Mourani said the Mafia is trying to strengthen its ties with the bikers.
“They give out contracts if they want to kill someone, and if it's not someone huge in the underworld, they're going to use bikers,” she said.
That poses a greater risk to public safety.
Mourani has a warning for the New Year:
“What we know is in 2013, there is going to be more and more shooting -- but we don't know who and we don't know how. And we can't prevent it; it's uncontrollable,” she said.