04/01/2015 06:58 EDT | Updated 06/01/2015 05:59 EDT

Charges recommended against 11 B.C. people accused in drug trafficking ring

VANCOUVER - Police are recommending charges against 11 people accused of trafficking drugs in Vancouver's impoverished Downtown Eastside.

Besides cocaine, heroin and 23,000 fentanyl pills, police say they have seized weapons including a crossbow, eight vehicles and $575,000 in cash.

Police say drugs are also believed to have been shipped to Vancouver Island and Alberta.

Supt. Mike Porteous says federal organized crime investigators and the RCMP assisted in serving search warrants in the city and in New Westminster, Coquitlam, Surrey and Maple Ridge.

The total value of the seizures is estimated at $1.8 million.

Police have already issued warnings about the painkiller fentanyl being mixed with heroin, oxycodone and other party drugs and causing several deaths among occasional drug users.