11/20/2014 09:54 EST | Updated 11/20/2014 09:59 EST

Mexican Drug Cartels Moving Into Calgary, Police Say

Dozens of 25kg-packages of drug totalizing more than 7 tons of cocaine are presented at the police airport in Lima, on September 1, 2014. According to Urresti, the drug belonged to a Mexican cartel and was destined to Belguim and Spain. AFP PHOTO/ERNESTO BENAVIDES (Photo credit should read ERNESTO BENAVIDES/AFP/Getty Images)

Mexican drug cartels are slowly making their way into Calgary as they attempt to secure a foothold in what they see as a wealthy city where users are willing to shell out loads of cash to get high, police say.

The cartels, known for violence and deeply-entrenched networks of distributors, pose a big challenge for city police, Sgt. Jason Walker said Wednesday in an overview of the local gang landscape.