TORONTO - Toronto police say 50 people were arrested Wednesday after a series of pre-dawn raids across the city targeting gangs, drugs and weapons.

Acting Chief Mark Saunders says the investigation -- dubbed Projects RX and Battery -- involved multiple police agencies from across southern Ontario as well as RCMP, OPP and the Canada Border Services Agency.

Saunders says the operation focused on two "incredibly ruthless" rival gangs known as the Sick Thugz and Asian Assassins, who police allege have been involved in a series of shootings in the city.

He says the almost year-long investigation led to 53 search warrants being executed Wednesday by a "multitude" of police service agencies, although most of the raids were executed in the Toronto area.

The other forces involved were Peel, York, Halton, Niagara and Durham regional police, as well as Waterloo, Barrie, Guelph, Windsor, London, Hamilton, Belleville, South Simcoe and Brantford police.

Those arrested are expected to face charges related to criminal organization, as well as firearms possession and trafficking, drug trafficking, human trafficking, armed robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery.