Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Guns, drugs and cash seized in anti-bikie sting

Sydney, Australia (March 21, 2018) BTN — Drugs, guns, and cash were seized after police raided seven outlaw motorcycle club's linked properties across Canberra on Wednesday. A 35-year-old Evatt man was charged with firearm related offences as a result of the sting, which coincided with operations interstate as part of a national day of action targeting outlaw motorcycle clubs.

ACT police chief Justine Saunders said the raids showed bikies that the capital was a hostile jurisdiction and pledged to continue to push for tough new laws targeting criminal motorcycle clubs. The ACT hosts chapters of three major outlaw clubs, the Nomads, Comanchero, and Rebels.

A feud between the Nomads and Comanchero has been blamed for tit-for-tat violence, including drive-by shootings, in Canberra's south.

Nationally, Wednesday's day of action was led by Operation Morpheus, the national Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs taskforce, while the Canberra search warrants were conducted by ACT Policing bikie busting group Taskforce Nemesis.

Police said the raids across the capital uncovered three firearms, 270 rounds of ammunition, about 28 grams of a substance believed to be methylamphetamine, about 12 grams of a substance believed to be cocaine, and more $50,000 in cash, suspected to be proceeds of crime.

In Victoria, seven people were charged with a variety of offences and police seized motorcycles, drugs, cash, computers and more than $1 million-worth of alcohol. ACT deputy chief police officer crime Mark Walters said disrupting the illegal activities of criminal gangs was a priority for ACT Policing.

"This action is just one part of our ongoing efforts to disrupt and dismantle criminal gangs in our community," Commander Walters said.

"Taskforce Nemesis", supported by every ACT Policing officer, continues to focus on serious and organised crime and apply pressure to members of criminal gangs.

"We will continue to work collaboratively with our state, territory and Commonwealth partners to address the threats posed by criminal gangs."

Assistant Commissioner Justine Saunders said community safety was paramount and ACT Policing would continue to work with the ACT Government on laws to prevent and deter serious and organised crime and associated firearms related violence in the capital.

"Whilst I fully support the principles of the Human Rights Act that we operate under here in the ACT, I will continue to pursue legislative reform that is proportionate to the threat that serious and organised crime presents to our community," she said.

The 35-year-old Evatt man charged with firearms offences will appear before the ACT Magistrate's Court at a later date.

SOURCE: The Sydney Morning Herald