CHICAGO (STMW) – Chicago police busted a gang-controlled drug market in the West Side Austin neighborhood, nabbing 14 people and taking more than $20,000 worth of drugs off the street, authorities announced Friday.

The investigation centered on the violence-plagued intersection of Laramie and Maypole avenues, where authorities allege the 4 Corner Hustlers street gang controls drug activity, according to a police News Affairs release.

Surveillance and undercover drug transactions helped authorities identify 18 suspects involved in neighborhood drug activity — the majority of whom are known gang members, the release said. Nine are convicted felons and one is a parolee.

Fourteen of the suspects were arrested in a Friday takedown, and police are still seeking the remaining suspects as the investigation continues, the police said. They face a variety of drug charges.

Authorities also seized nearly $20,000 worth of heroin, cannabis and crack cocaine, as well as a firearm, two vehicles and cash, the release said.

“The Violence Reduction Strategy we implemented earlier this year is starting to take hold, and these takedowns are an important part of that strategy,” Superintendent Garry McCarthy said in the release. “Gang and narcotics activity plays a large role in the violence in our communities and we will be relentless in our pursuit of those engaging in such activities.”

Drug busts last week in the Gresham District on the South Side and the Harrison District on the West Side netted 22 arrests, along with seized weapons, drugs and cash, police said.

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