We will not tolerate their challenge and such midnight violence ... They have to pay the price, says Kowloon West senior superintendent Triads have declared war on police and the force would make them 'pay the price', a Kowloon West police chief said yesterday after a third consecutive night of raids on triad activities. 'They have declared a war on us. We will not tolerate their challenge and such midnight violence. We have to take action against them,' Senior Superintendent Edward Leung Ka-ming told the South China Morning Post. 'We want to send a very strong message to triad groups that they have to pay the price for openly challenging police authority.' Officers would show 'zero tolerance' towards triads after recent shows of strength by the criminals and would continue daily raids on triad-controlled businesses across the Kowloon West region. Police would target illegal activities such as vice, drug trafficking, gambling and the sale of illicit goods to thwart traditional triad income sources, Mr Leung said. They would also try to identify triad bosses and collect evidence on their illegal businesses through different channels to smash the wider triad family tree. Three triads - Sun Yee On, Wo Shing Wo and 14K - are understood to be active in Kowloon West. A police source said the leaders of the 14K had made a private apology to police over the show of defiance by their followers. Mr Leung's stark warning came after officers raided triad-controlled entertainment establishments in Mongkok, Yau Ma Tei and Tsim Sha Tsui for the third night and arrested seven men and 17 women yesterday. Around 2am, officers arrested another 17 men and seized $2,700 in cash during a raid on a gambling den at a fruit market in Ching Ping Street, Yau Ma Tei, about 200 metres from the local police station. It is understood the raids mainly targeted entertainment venues controlled by the 14K triad. Dozens of entertainment businesses, including nightclubs, massage centres and mahjong parlours in Kowloon West, mainly in Portland Street, Mongkok, are understood to be controlled by the 14K triad society. The past three nights of police raids were provoked when a group of 14K members clashed with officers during a routine inspection of a Nathan Road disco on Saturday night, calling in more members in a show of strength. Mr Leung said the raids would continue until triad activities and violence subsided. The raids have been carried out by officers from districts, regional crime units, anti-triad squads and the tactical unit in Kowloon West. Mr Leung insisted the raids only targeted triad-controlled venues and legitimate business would not be affected. During the raid that triggered the original show of triad strength, staff allegedly helped patrons leave through a back door of the 348 Disco and Karaoke. Detectives from the Kowloon West headquarters, Yau Tsim District and the police tactical unit took part in Sunday nights raids, which began at midnight. They arrested six men near the 348 disco for allegedly assaulting police officers, claiming to be triad members and obstructing police in the execution of their duties. Two alleged office-bearers of the 14K triad are among more than 50 people arrested in the past four days. Seven alleged triad members involved in Saturday's clash are understood to remain in police custody. No charges have been laid.