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Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Mayor wants Hells Angels MC clubhouse gone

Surrey, B.C. (December 18, 2018) BTN — Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum says he had no idea that the Hells Angels had opened a clubhouse in his city, even after a pledge from police several years ago that the motorcycle club would not be allowed to set up there.

McCallum, who was elected in October, said on Monday that the Hells Angels are “not welcome” in Surrey.

After a service this past Saturday service for murdered Hells Angel Chad Wilson, his fellow bikers gathered at the HA’s Hardside chapter clubhouse, which is on a small acreage near 180th St. and 96th Ave.

Mayor wants the Hells Angels MC Clubhouse closed up

Officers from the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit, Surrey RCMP, Vancouver Police Department and other RCMP detachments monitored both the Maple Ridge funeral and the afterparty, both of which Postmedia reported on.

Wilson had moved over to the Hardside chapter when it opened on March 17, 2017. He had previously been a member of the Haney Hells Angels and the “Dago” chapter based in San Diego.
The clubhouse is believed to have opened some time in 2018 — five years after former top Surrey Mountie Bill Fordy pledged to block another Hells Angels chapter from using Surrey as its base.

McCallum echoed that sentiment in a statement to Postmedia on Monday. “Hells Angels are not welcome in Surrey. I was unaware that a clubhouse had been set up here recently,” McCallum said. “I will be addressing this matter immediately with the officer in charge of Surrey RCMP.”

That officer, Asst. Commissioner Dwayne McDonald, said Monday that his officers are well aware of the clubhouse. “The police and the City of Surrey were made aware of the Hells Angels intention to set up a clubhouse in 2017 and, at that time, the city and the police collectively reviewed all legal means to keep this clubhouse out of Surrey,” McDonald said in a statement Monday.

“However, the police have no legal authority to deny someone from purchasing or renting a residence.”
He said he agreed with McCallum that the Hells Angels are not welcome in Surrey “and that we will use every lawful means to ensure that their members are not participating in any criminal activity in this city.”

McDonald said both Surrey RCMP and officers with the anti-gang CFSEU “have regular contact with members of the Hardside chapter to ensure they understand our expectations regarding public safety.” There have not been any problems at events hosted by Hardside or other outlaw motorcycle gangs in Surrey, he said.

In January 2013, former head Mountie Fordy said he met with the president of the West Point Hells Angels chapter to tell him not to establish a clubhouse in Surrey. West Point started in 2012 and was expected to base itself in Surrey.

West Point waited years to open its clubhouse, which is located in a rented house on 2.25 acres in Langley, near the Canada-U.S. border. The Hardside chapter also appears to be in a rented house, which is located on two acres of property zoned agricultural. The property, assessed this year at just $47,000 because it is farmland, is owned by a Delta couple that has no apparent association with the Hells Angels.

Hells Angels spokesman Rick Ciarniello did not respond to an emailed request for comment Monday.

Currently, the Hells Angels are embroiled in a long-running court case with the B.C. government over the ownership of three clubhouses in Nanaimo, Kelowna and East Vancouver. The director of civil forfeiture wants the properties turned over to the government as instruments of criminal activity. The Angels have alleged the Civil Forfeiture Act is unconstitutional. The trial resumes in February.

CFSEU Sgt. Brenda Winpenny said the Hells Angels use their club as “a place where they can have their meetings, social gatherings, parties, and store assets belonging to the club.”

The bikers also use their clubhouses to create legitimacy and public awareness of their brand.

“Clubhouses are armed by overt surveillance and fortified to ensure security,” she said. “Clubhouses also serve as an intimidation factor in the communities where they exist.”

SOURCE: Vancouver Sun

Clearing the head

Taking a putt to clear the head, sort out priorities and gain some new perspectives on life 

Hells Angels MC purchases vacant church

Brookhaven, NY (December 18, 2018) BTN — Brookhaven Town officials say the Hells Angels have purchased a former Centereach church and plan to use it as the club’s new headquarters.

The motorcycle club's Suffolk County chapter, which held a children's toy drive at the Lynbrook Street site earlier this month, plans to modify the structure's interior and obtain town permits before moving in, officials said. Town officials said club leaders have been cooperative and plan to be "good neighbors."

Brookhaven officials said some neighboring residents have expressed concern about the club's purchase of the property, but they said the town cannot prevent the group from using the site as long as members abide by local codes.

“I share the concerns of the residents who have called me,” town Councilman Kevin LaValle said. “There's nothing we can say, like, 'You can’t come in here.' . . . They just have to come into compliance before they use the building.”

In a phone interview, Manhattan attorney Ron Kuby, who represents the Hells Angels, said the Suffolk club wants “to have a safe and happy community.”

“Even though they have a fearsome reputation, as neighbors they tend to be an asset to the neighborhood,” Kuby said. “Historically, anywhere there has been a Hells Angels presence, street crime has fallen off dramatically. 

They patronize local businesses, and they are a private organization of motorcycle enthusiasts who largely wish to be left alone to pursue the things that are of interest to them. …Once people peel back the layer of prejudice they have toward them, they find that they’re good to have around.”

A Suffolk County police spokesman said the department was aware of the group's purchase of the property, but he declined to comment further.

Deputy Town Attorney David Moran said he met with two Hells Angels leaders on Friday to discuss building requirements and the group's plans for the property. He said the club is required to obtain building permits for any work done on the site, and a certificate of occupancy before the group moves in.

“It went swimmingly," Moran said of the meeting. "They were gentlemen.  . . . All they want to do is comply and be good neighbors.”

Town officials inspected the building  and ordered the installation of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, Moran said.

LaValle said Hells Angels members have mentioned plans to use the building, which has been vacant for several years, as a church, but a flyer referred to the property as a clubhouse.

“That’s something we’re going to have to talk to them about,” LaValle said. “We’re going to get a better idea of what specifically is going to go on the property.”

The Dec. 8 toy drive, which included a live music performance inside the church, attracted "a few hundred people," raising concerns about parking, Moran said. He added the town received no noise complaints associated with the gathering.

He said the group planned to distribute gifts collected at the event to local fire departments and religious groups.

The club has not submitted a building permit application with the town, Moran said.

“As far as we’re concerned, they have a clean slate and we’re going to treat them the way we treat everyone," he said.

SOURCE: News Day

Monday, December 17, 2018

All 4 cops on paid leave after bar fight

Pittsburgh, PA (December 17, 2018) BTN — All four Pittsburgh police officers involved in a South Side bar brawl are on paid administrative leave, according to city officials.

The brawl between the undercover officers and members of the Pagans motorcycle club at Kopy’s remains under investigation by the city’s Office of Municipal Investigations, the Citizens Police Review Board and the FBI.

Scene from Kopy's bar 

The police department is also conducting its own internal review.

Mayor Bill Peduto said new information came to light that led to the decision to remove the officers from the narcotics unit, though he would not specify what was discovered. He said there is no timetable for when the investigations will wrap up.

“We felt it prudent to move all four officers out of narcotics,” he said. A Public Safety spokesperson could not immediately be reached for comment.

Detectives David Honick, David Lincoln, Brian Burgunder and Brian Martin were working an undercover detail when they arrived at Kopy’s on South 12th Street at about 7:30 p.m. Oct. 11. Six members of the Pagans arrived about four hours later. An argument between several of the detectives and at least one Pagan escalated into a brawl at about 12:40 a.m. Oct. 12.

Related Pagans MC: Another member sues city officials 
Four Pagans — Frank Deluca, Michael Zokaites, Erik Heitzenrater and Bruce Thomas — were arrested. District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr. later withdrew the charges. Security footage captured the melee, including one officer punching Deluca 19 times in the head.

Deluca and Heitzenrater have filed lawsuits, and attorneys for the men have alleged the undercover officers were intoxicated.

Peduto previously said city police need to change the department’s policies regarding undercover work.

“With narcotics and vice, you’re going to have situations where officers are involved in a situation where they don’t want to have their cover blown,” he said late last month. “Obviously you’re not going to go to a bar and order chocolate milk, but at the same time there has to be accountability to be able to carry out your job.”

Police have said the four undercover detectives were investigating a drug complaint at the bar. Bartender and owner Stephen Kopy has said the officers identified themselves as construction workers when they arrived.


Police keeping eye on new motorcycle club

Keremeos, B.C. (December 17, 2018) BTN — A new motorcycle club police say is affiliated with the Hells Angels has established itself around Fort Langley.

Members of the Street Reapers motorcycle club were reportedly spotted at the funeral of slain Hells Angel Chad Wilson in Maple Ridge on Saturday.

Hells Angels MC and Street Reapers MC gather for funeral 

“The Street Reapers are actually a motorcycle club that are closely associated and have close ties to the Hardside chapter of the Hells Angels,” said Sgt. Brenda Winpenny, spokesperson for the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU), an anti-gang policing unit.

The Hardside Hells Angels chapter is based near Langley as well, in the Port Kells area of Surrey.

The Street Reapers appear to have come into existence in late 2017, a little more than a year ago, said Winpenny. “We have noticed them at several of the Hells Angel ride events over the summer of 2018,” she said.

There are believed to be between six to 10 members of the club; six is the minimum number for a motorcycle club of this type, Winpenny said.

The group is not believed to have an official clubhouse yet, but has been seen frequenting businesses in Fort Langley. It’s likely one or more members live in or have a business in the area, Winpenny said.

The Hells Angels are well known and have been established in many communities across B.C. for decades, including in Langley. But a new wave of smaller clubs have been cropping up in recent years, with different logos on their leather vests and jackets.

Winpenny said they are largely “support clubs” for the Hells Angels.

“They’re succession planning,” she said of the Angels.

The core of the Hells Angels membership is aging, and they need new members.

Support clubs are sources of new recruits who can be “patched over” to the Hells Angels if they measure up.

“It’s like the farm team,” said Winpenny.

The CFSEU has been keeping an eye on the Street Reapers, but so far there have been no charges laid against anyone related to the motorcycle club or its activities, she said.

“We are still intelligence gathering,” said Winpenny.

The affiliation police believe exists between the Street Reapers and other clubs should be a cause for concern for the public, said Winpenny.

The Hells Angels have been involved in drugs, weapons offenses, and violent crimes, she noted.

Hells Angels have gathered in Langley for years.

The White Rock chapter of the Hells Angels moved to Langley decades ago. In 2013, the chapter threw a 30th anniversary bash that drew a large number of bikers and guests to the gated clubhouse property on 61st Avenue east of 216th Street. Police were also there in droves, monitoring the coming and goings of the guests.