CHICAGO (STMW) – Nine purported gang members were arrested after police busted an open-air drug market on a West Side street corner on Friday.

Police say the bust is part of an ongoing strategy to get rid of street gang narcotics and gang activity “block by block.”

A spike in shootings and violence near Ohio and Hamlin streets led Narcotics Divisions Officers to begin their investigation of the corner two months ago.

Tied to the Conservative Vice Lord gang, police seized $6,700 in illegal funds and heroin with an estimate street value of $3,000.

Speaking at the Humboldt Park corner on Saturday afternoon, First Deputy Superintendent Alfonza Wysinger called the bust a take back for the community.

“If we have clergy standing out here, if we have community member standing out here, the narcotics sellers and gang members are not going to come back and try to reclaim this corner,” Wysinger said.

Wysinger said the area would get immediate increased police patrols but added that “watchful eyes” of community members would help continue to clear the corner from gang activity.

“We’re going to do every thing that we can possibly do to ensure gang members and drug dealers don’t come back and take this community back,” he said. “We’re going to do this block by block, step by step and for the entire city.”

The following were arrested: Geonne Crew, 30; Jontae Adams, 20; Derick Coopwood, 19; Troy Harris, 17; Michael Raggs, 19; Jermaine Rose, 20; Charles Scott, 44; Quentin Scott, 23, and a 15-year-old boy.

Rose was ordered held without bond, while Charles Scott was ordered held on $250,00 bond, according to the Cook County Sheriff’s office website. Raggs was held on $150,000 bond, Crew was ordered held on $100,000 bond and Quentin Scott was ordered held on $75,000. Adams, Coopwood and Harris were all ordered held on $50,000 bond.

All nine have been charged with drug related offenses. Three others with outstanding warrants are being sought and were not in custody Saturday afternoon.

© Sun-Times Media Wire Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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