The crackdown on organised crime in Chongqing is being expanded, with increasing numbers of police officers involved. The number of special task forces had increased from 14 at the start of the crackdown to 200 and the number of police officers involved had risen from 3,000 to 7,000, the Chongqing Evening Post quoted a senior Public Security Bureau source as saying. The remarks came as Liu Guanglei, secretary of the Communist Party's political and judiciary committee in the municipality, visited several judicial and police institutions. Liu, who oversees the municipality's police, prosecution bodies and courts, made the visits to improve morale among frontline police who have found themselves both hunter and hunted in the crackdown. Bulletin boards and chat rooms have been flooded with rumours that the crackdown, which has snared more than 1,500 people ranging from low-level hoodlums to senior officials, would end in time for the National Day celebrations on October 1, which also marks the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic. But Liu denied this, saying the campaign was at a critical point and could not stop now. He vowed to crush the 'protective umbrellas' - police and officials who shielded criminal gangs. He said authorities would smash the economic base of the gangs and pursue assets amassed illicitly. 'We must keep each criminal syndicate we crush from getting back to where they were [before the crackdown] for at least 10 years,' Liu told 400 officers in Yuzhong district. Billionaire triad bosses Chen Mingliang and Ma Dang ran nightclubs and an underground casino in this district under the protection of Wen Qiang , the now-detained former justice chief and deputy head of the police force. Wen was found to have amassed 1 billion yuan (HK$1.13 billion) in property and cash. More than 700 officials and police were arrested in the first seven months of this year. To keep word of future raids from reaching underworld figures, all officers involved are living at their police stations.