An Abbotsford man who police have previously said is connected to the Lower Mainland gang conflict has pleaded guilty to a weapons charge.
Barinder (Brian) “Shrek” Dhaliwal was originally charged with four offences, but pleaded guilty on Monday in B.C. Supreme Court in Chilliwack to a lesser charge on one of the offences.
That original charge was for possessing a restricted firearm with ammunition, but the charge to which Dhaliwal will now be sentenced is for being in a vehicle in which he knew a firearm was present.
The three other charges – possessing a firearm with an altered serial number and two counts of possessing an unlicensed firearm – are expected to be stayed at sentencing. Dhaliwal’s hearing has been scheduled for June 25 in Chilliwack.
Dhaliwal, 34, was charged following an incident that occurred on Nov. 29, 2016.
On that day, officers with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit observed a vehicle believed to be connected to the ongoing gang conflict “engaged in behaviour consistent with drug trafficking.”
Officers pulled over the vehicle in Abbotsford, but it then fled. The vehicle was relocated and a man was seen running from it before it again sped away.
Police arrested the man who had fled on foot and, with the help of a police dog, located a loaded 9mm handgun nearby. The vehicle was not found again.
After the arrest, police searched a home in the 19800 block of 83 Avenue in Langley. That search turned up “ammunition and a small pistol suspected of being modified to shoot .22 calibre ammunition.” Dhaliwal was subsequently charged.
He is believed to have been the target of at least two prior drive-by shootings in Abbotsford.
One occurred in January 2011 at a home on Bradner Road. A 25-year-old woman had just pulled into the driveway when shots rang out, and the bullets narrowly missed her, but were believed to have been intended for Dhaliwal.
A second drive-by shooting in the area of Dhaliwal’s Bradner Road home took place in September 2012, resulting in a 24-year-old man suffering a gunshot wound to his arm.
Search warrant documents later showed that one of the men who was a suspect in the shooting was Jujhar Khun-Khun, whose trial began last year on murder charges related to the 2011 shooting of Jonathan Bacon outside of a Kelowna casino.
The two Bradner Road drive-by shootings prompted police to later install video surveillance cameras in the area of Dhaliwal’s home in the 2500 block.
Dhaliwal again was targeted in July 2013, when he was shot at while driving along Downes Road between 264 Street and Mt. Lehman Road.
He showed up at the hospital with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound, and hospital staff informed police. At the time, police said the victim would not provide many details of what had occurred.