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(GER) German state tries to ban online Hells Angels logos
North Rhine-Westphalia has decided to enforce a ban on biker gangs? logos being displayed on websites. It is not at all clear how this is supposed to happen.This week in the world of questionable online censorship decisions: The German state of North Rhine-Westphalia has banned the logos of two biker gangs from the internet.The Hells Angels and Bandidos gangs have been problematic in some areas of Germany for some time, particularly in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), where for years they?ve been fighting deadly turf wars over drugs and prostitution. Local chapters have been banned in NRW since 2012 and authorities have recently moved to enforce a ban on their symbols, too.Physical displays of the logos have technically been banned across the country since 1983, though that legal interpretation was only clarified earlier this year in a ruling by the Hamburg regional court.On Tuesday, NRW interior minister Ralf Jäger announced that the ban on the Hells Angels? helmeted skull logo and the Bandidos? ?Fat Mexican? logo would extend to the internet as well. He said this ?zero-tolerance? strategy would hinder the ability of the so-called rocker gangs to promote themselves online.?The deceptive image of motorcycle romance has glorified the view of the criminal reality,? he said in a statement.I?ve repeatedly tried to ask Jäger?s office how this is supposed to work in practice: Does it mean only local websites must delete these logos? Will foreign websites bearing the logos also risk fines if people in NRW view them? However, I?ve not had any luck getting a response.English-language German news site TheLocal.de had a bit more luck, eliciting this response from a spokesperson: ?Offenders will be tracked down based on the website and punished.?http://gigaom.com/2014/07/23/german-state-tries-to-ban-online-hells-angels-logos/
Publ.Date : Wed, 23 Jul 2014 23:23:22 +0000
(AUS) Queenslanders yet to cash in on crime tips
No cash rewards have been offered in Queensland for information leading to the arrest of suspected bikies despite a funding boost to Crime Stoppers nine months ago.Police Minister Jack Dempsey, in October 2013, announced a $5 million grant to Crime Stoppers for the next 12 months to fund additional reward payments for information on criminal gangs.Mr Dempsey said cash payments of up to $20,000 could be made for information leading to the arrests of criminals involved with firearms, dangerous drugs, extortion and robbery.This included cash rewards of up to $1,000 which led to a successful raid on drug labs, which found guns, ammunition or other weapons.Cash rewards of up to $500,000 were also offered if a successful prosecution shut down a criminal gang.But Crime Stoppers Queensland says it hasn't paid anyone since that October announcement."No claims for enhanced cash rewards have been received for payment at this time," a website update said this week.Meanwhile, civil libertarians are questioning new figures showing sharp drops in crime on the Gold Coast.Retired army officer Brigadier Bill Mellor was commissioned by the Liberal National government to report on its bikie crackdown.His report card, obtained by the ABC, showed assaults had fallen by 16 per cent when two periods were compared, covering October 2012 to February 2013 and October 2013 to February 2014.During the same periods, unlawful entries fell by 31 per cent, property damage dropped by 18 per cent and armed robbery was down by 38 per cent.But drug offences had increased by 17 per cent.The Queensland Council for Civil Liberties questioned the independence of the figures."It's a suspect result because these are statistics produced within the secret confines of the government," the council's vice-president Terry O'Gorman told the ABC.Comment has been sought from Police Minister Jack Dempsey.http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/queenslanders-yet-to-cash-in-on-crime-tips-20140723-zw5va.html#ixzz38LQhdKZR
Publ.Date : Wed, 23 Jul 2014 23:21:07 +0000
(AUS) Campbell Newman\'s Government losing public relations war over bikie crackdown in Queensland, report card reveals, despite drop in Gold Coast crime
The man overseeing Queensland's bikie crackdown says the State Government is winning the battle but losing the public relations war.The ABC has obtained the six-month report card from Brigadier Bill Mellor, the retired army officer hand-picked by Premier Campbell Newman to lead the Strategic Monitoring Team.The report, penned in April, said the epicentre of the bikie blitz, the Gold Coast, has seen a substantial drop in crime."When comparing two identical seasonal periods of time Oct 2012 - Feb 2013 and Oct 2013 - Feb 2014, the rate of offence per 100,000 people in the Gold Coast policing district has reduced by 16.38 per cent for assault, by 31.25 per cent for unlawful entries, by 18.47 per cent for property damage and by 38 per cent for armed robbery," the report said.The rate of drug offences for the same period has increased by 17 per cent, but Mr Mellor says that is to be expected.Last October, the Government passed the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment laws to target bikie gangs and other criminal groups.That same month, the Queensland Police Service set up Taskforce Maxima to disrupt, dismantle and eliminate criminal motorcycle gangs.Police numbers were boosted on the Gold Coast, where numerous bikie raids have been conducted by Taskforce Maxima officers."This can be attributed to more police available to carry out operations on the Gold Coast and the targeted nature of the enforcement activity," he said.The interim report also reveals the crackdown, Operation Resolute, cost $4.57 million over the first six months, which was under budget.There are concerns, though, that the public has not gone along for the ride."While we have been winning against the criminal gangs, the CMGs' public relations campaign to 'project' themselves as simply motorcycle enthusiasts cultivated some angst about the new laws in sections of the community," the report stated.It relies on market research conducted in December which 34 per cent of respondents supported the laws, 26 per cent were opposed and 40 per cent supported but with some concerns."Highest support was for tougher bail conditions and significant increases in Police and CMC resourcing, while the lowest support was for new special prison sections, longer jail sentences and the association laws," the report said.The Queensland Council of Civil Liberties says an independent body should be assessing the bikie crackdown.'Independent review needed'Civil libertarian Terry O'Gorman said the figures released by Brigadier Mellor were "nonsense"."It's a suspect result because these are statistics produced within the secret confines of the Government," Mr O'Gorman said."New South Wales has the Independent Bureau of Crime Statistics which calls in the government of the day - Labor or Liberal - and says 'your figures are rubbery'."In Queensland we don't have any independent body."http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-07-22/queensland-police-winning-battle-against-bikies-on-gold-coast/5614982
Publ.Date : Wed, 23 Jul 2014 23:19:30 +0000
(AUS) Ex-president of Gold Coast Bandidos Adam White allegedly ran extortion racket on group including police officer?s son
A HULKING ex-bikie president faces a mandatory 25 years in jail after allegedly running an extortion racket on a group including a police officer?s son.Adam Christopher White is accused of ?stamping? four victims for $5000 in payback for his mate losing a fight to one of them over a girl.White, 26, who led the Gold Coast Bandidos chapter while living with his parents at Carindale, quit the gang along with most of his clubmates last year to evade harsh anti-gang laws.But his alleged role in the standover racket last month in company with a former Bandidos prospect has seen him captured regardless by Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment laws.VLAD, which has yet to be applied in sentencing by the courts, mandates an extra 25 years jail for offenders who are ?office bearers? in criminal organisations.Detective Inspector Brendan Smith of gang squad Maxima said the case showed some bikies who had handed in their colours to lawyers and carried affidavits swearing to their resignations from gangs, were still behaving like gangsters.?They?re still talking about the gang. It?s becoming more and more clear that some Bandidos who say they?ve disassociated haven?t really disassociated,? he said.Police will allege the extortions sprang from an altercation which began with one of the victims speaking to an ex-girlfriend of White?s friend.White?s friend later came off second best in a confrontation at his house with the victim, who had several friends looking on.The friend then complained to White, who ?fined? the victim and all of his friends $5000 each.They were allegedly forced to pay $2000 before police intervened.Police allege one victim had furniture torched as intimidation, while another?s car windscreen was smashed with a baseball bat.Three men, including White and a 22-year-old former Bandidos prospect, of Shailer Park, have been charged with extortion and wilful damage under VLAD.They were arrested in raids this morning along with two associates, 21 and 36, both of Shailer Park, on minor drug charges.Fellow alleged Bandido members Jonathan Patrick Davies and Christopher Bougoure, both 22, did not apply for bail when they appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on Thursday.The pair are charged with four counts each of extortion and one each of wilful damage, possessing a dangerous drug and property suspected of being used in connection with a drug offence.Solicitor Debbie Kilroy, for Davies, said her client did not wish to apply for bail and requested he be remanded in custody for mention of his charges on September 1.However, lawyers for Bougoure told the court the largely built alleged biker would be seeking bail and requested a hearing be set down in the George St Magistrates Court 20 on Tuesday.Magistrate Jacqui Payne granted both applications.Outside court, White?s barrister Sam Di Carlo told The Courier-Mail his client would make an application for immediate bail.Mr Di Carlo said police had victimized his client on a regular basis and executed searches of White?s residence on at least four occasions in the past six weeks.?I will be having a few things to say (in court) about this,?? Mr Di Carlo said. ?The attention (White) has received from police is outrageous.??http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/expresident-of-gold-coast-bandidos-adam-white-allegedly-ran-extortion-racket-on-group-including-police-officers-son/story-fnihsrf2-1226999663471?nk=122e961341c49ad70413966727494730
Publ.Date : Wed, 23 Jul 2014 23:18:06 +0000
(USSA) Family wants answers in death of loved one
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -The family of a man shot and killed outside a Jacksonville Beach restaurant is demanding action more than a month after his death.Zachariah Tipton, 40, was killed June 26 after a group of men got into fight outside Nippers Beach Grille.Jacksonville Beach police have questioned several people but have made no arrests.On Wednesday afternoon, Tipton's family met outside the State Attorney's Office for a demonstration. They said the gathering would be peaceful and was all about demanding answers.?The family right now, we are wanting to know information regarding his murder,? said Tina Tipton, Zachariah Tipton's sister. ?We feel we don?t know more than the general public, and that?s upsetting.?The Jacksonville Beach Police Department has filed the case with the State Attorney's Office for review and any potential further investigation, but so far no charges have been filed against anyone involved.?We?ve lost someone mighty important in our life, and no one knows who, why or anything,? said Jimmy Carter, Zachariah Tipton's father. ?I understand there?s an ongoing investigation going on, but I think it?s about time that the family has the right to know.?Police there said that a group of men got into a verbal altercation the night Zachariah Tipton was killed that quickly became a fight outside the restaurant. During the fight, Tipton was shot once and killed.Witnesses told News4Jax the shooter surrendered immediately, but police have not released the shooter's name or other details. They said it's because the decision about filing charges still hasn't been made.Family members said they have been told that this is a possible self-defense shooting investigation, which could take weeks or even months to complete. That's why they demonstrated at the State Attorney's Office Wednesday, asking for a faster resolution.?They?re saying they have a lot of conflicting stories. What?s the truth and what?s lies?? said Kathy Livingston, a family friend. ?So they have to go through all of it, and the family wants some answers.?"The State Attorney's Office is conducting a thorough investigation into the fatal shooting at Nippers," it said in a statement Wednesday. "An investigation can take weeks or even months to complete. At this time, no information will be released regarding the pending investigation."Zachariah Tipton left behind a wife and three children. He and his wife owned a glass windows cleaning business in Fernandina Beach, and friends said he loved boats and riding motorcycles.Family members said if they don?t know something within the next few weeks, they are planning to demonstrate until this case is resolved.http://www.news4jax.com/news/family-wants-answers-in-death-of-loved-one/27104560
Publ.Date : Wed, 23 Jul 2014 23:08:47 +0000
(USA) Overwhelming force? keeps Angels mellow
Residents aren?t exactly boarding up their windows, but there?s a certain nervous anticipation building as the visit of the Hells Angels approaches.Two weeks from now they will pour into Cody, likely building to their biggest crowd Friday, Aug. 1. That weekend they?ll migrate 400 miles east for the 74th annual Black Hills Motor Classic in Sturgis.Similar to 2006 when these same notorious bikers gathered here in numbers exceeding 1,000, their stay in Cody will be long on vacation and family time. With a crowd perhaps one-third the size of their last visit, if all goes according to plan, this will translate into peaceful visiting, partying and hanging out.This is opposed to getting down to the business of whatever outlaw biker gangs get down to when they put on a show of force in Sturgis.But we?ll let the experts in South Dakota take care of their problems; we have our own militia ? formed of city, county, state and federal officers ? to keep a lid on things in our village.Cody has largely adopted the famous general?s ?Powell Doctrine? from the Gulf War. It emphasized ?overwhelming strike capabilities with an emphasis on ground forces, and widespread public support.?Armed with nearly $200,000 in special state funding to pay, feed and house our small army of officers, we?re sure to have the first two criteria covered. But if officers stop or ticket locals every time they spit on the sidewalk, as seemed to happen in ?06, the Hells Angels may be the least of their concerns.This year?s main daylight-hours encampment for the Angels will not be Ponderosa Campground as in 2006, but across the highway in the low land west of the Super 8 Motel. While they are said to be staying in motels all around town, many will gather here during the day.Cody walks a tightrope when it comes to the Hells Angels. Given our proximity to Sturgis, it appears they favor Cody as their staging area before proceeding en masse to the Black Hills.Spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to maintain strict law and order, and the public welfare is maintained, with no ?trouble with a capital T.?But all that peace and quiet also makes Cody all the more attractive to the Hells Angels as they rest up for the big show the following week.It?d be funny if it weren?t so expensive how Cody has been forced to create a demilitarized zone wherein the baddest bikers on earth rest up for battle.http://www.codyenterprise.com/news/opinion/article_349bcb14-0d26-11e4-b038-0019bb2963f4.html
Publ.Date : Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:14:22 +0000
(USA) Utah lawmakers urged to get ahead of proliferation of outlaw motorcycle gxxgs
SALT LAKE CITY ? This is the place ? or more so becoming the place ? for outlaw motorcycle gangs, a veteran police officer told state lawmakers Wednesday."There's been a 300 percent increase in the members of outlaw motorcycle gangs in Utah, compared to what we experienced five years ago," Utah County Sheriff's Sgt. Lane Critser told members of the Legislature's Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Interim Committee.Critser, who has worked in gang enforcement since 2008, said the proliferation of gangs and gang members could be attributed to multiple factors. Utah is an "untouched" state, meaning no gang has claimed territory as its own. Also, law enforcement in Utah is unaccustomed to dealing with outlaw motorcycle gangs on a regular basis, he said."It's like a gold rush. Everybody is trying to get here and establish dominance in the state so they can run a variety of their criminal activities and make their money in the state," Critser said.The trend is disturbing, he said, because many long-established outlaw motorcycle gangs have ties to Mexican drug cartels, according to U.S. Department of Justice reports. They also commit insurance fraud and forgery to support their activities, Critser said.The state also is becoming increasingly attractive to members of outlaw motorcycle clubs because Utah is largely rural, said Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield."A lot of our counties don?t have the manpower or the money to fight them or handle them when they come into town on a run," Ray said.A number of gangs have conducted national runs in rural Utah, Critser said. In 2008, the Bandidos hosted a national mandatory run in Moab. The Mongols have conducted a run in Wayne County in the past five years.Two summers ago, the Vagos made a run into Ogden, Ray said. However, several members racked up citations for multiple violations in numerous counties while en route to Weber County."By the time they got there, they just turned around and went home. They didn?t want to deal with it any more," Ray said. "Really, you've got to make it expensive and uncomfortable for these guys and they won't want to stick around."Recently, the Barons, a motorcycle gang with a longtime presence in Utah, hosted members of the Gypsy Jokers gang during the Barons' annual summer run to Wasatch County.A small group of Gypsy Jokers gang members entered the Rainbow Family gathering outside of Heber City, and an altercation took place. Critser said it was unclear who was the aggressor, but the gang members were arrested on charges of DUI, drug offenses and possession of deadly weapons.Weaponry seized during arrests of outlaw gang members across the country suggest that some have law-enforcement or military-grade firearms and body armor, Critser said.A zero tolerance policy in Ventura County, California, helped curb the activities of Hells Angels, he said, meaning every crime, violation or offense was enforced to the fullest extent, whether it was a new crime or a probation violation."Basically it got to the point that members of Hells Angels said we don't want to be gang members in Ventura County any more and they left. When they were interviewed, they basically said it got too expensive and it got difficult going to jail every time after committing a crime because they were being watched and there's a system to take care of it," Critser said.While he offered no details, Ray said he intends to introduce a gang initiative during the 2015 legislative session.Rep. Curtis Oda, R-Clearfield, said state lawmakers may want to revisit the gang injunction used by Weber County until it was thrown out of court.The Utah Supreme Court threw out the injunction ruling that the county did not properly serve summons to gang members."This is the same law that California had for nearly two decades, and their Supreme Court said it was fine. And our Supreme Court says we have a problem with this? It was starting to work," Oda said.He said the state should retool the injunction addressing the court's concerns, then attempt to apply it statewide.Ray said he believes the state is at a critical juncture in addressing the activities of outlaw motorcycle gangs."We?re at the point in Utah, if we take some decisive action, we can actually control the gang issue. We?ve got two choices: We can let it happen and then we have to manage it, or we can step out in front of it and control it," Ray said."I think we're still at the point, if we get into action and work this, we can actually control it," he said.http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865607029/Utah-lawmakers-urged-to-get-ahead-of-proliferation-of-outlaw-motorcycle-gangs.html?pg=2
Publ.Date : Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:12:52 +0000
(AUS) Rebels member charged with drug supply - Strike Force Raptor
A member of the Rebels outlaw motorcycle gang (OMCG) will appear in court today after being charged with drug supply offences by officers from Strike Force Raptor.About 10am yesterday (Wednesday 16 July 2014) Strike Force Raptor investigators executed a search warrant at a property on Amalfi Road, Wentworth Point.Inside the property, police located and seized:- 94 capsules containing a white powder believed to be cocaine;- A separate package containing close to five grams of a white powder believed to be cocaine;- 15 steroid tablets;- Nine steroid vials; and,- Equipment believed to have been used to aid the supply of illicit drugs.A 25-year-old man ? a member of the Rebels OMCG ? was arrested nearby. Strike Force Raptor investigators served the man with a Firearms Prohibition Order and a notice from the Australian Tax Office (ATO) before taking him to Auburn Police Station, where he was charged with:- Supply prohibited drug;- Two counts of possess prohibited drug; and,- Possess prescribed restricted substance.He was subsequently refused bail to appear before Burwood Local Court today (Thursday 17 July 2014).Strike Force Raptor was established by State Crime Command?s Gangs Squad in 2009. It is a proactive and high-impact operation targeting outlaw motorcycle gangs and any associated criminal enterprises. http://www.police.nsw.gov.au/news/latest_releases?sq_content_src=%2BdXJsPWh0dHBzJTNBJTJGJTJGZWJpenByZC5wb2xpY2UubnN3Lmdvdi5hdSUyRm1lZGlhJTJGMzkzNDAuaHRtbCZhbGw9MQ%3D%3D
Publ.Date : Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:10:30 +0000
(USA) Annual Kentucky Bike Rally kicks off in Union Co.
UNION CO., KY (WFIE) -The annual Kentucky Bike Rally starts today in Union County.State troopers are hoping for a safe weekend on the roads as bikers roll into Sturgis.The Kentucky Motorcycle Association has put up permanent "share the road" signs along area highways.Bikers say although a lot of the action will happen inside the fairgrounds, there will be bikers riding all over the county so drivers should be on the lookout.The rally runs through Sunday.http://www.14news.com/story/26042249/annual-kentucky-bike-rally-starts-today-in-union-county
Publ.Date : Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:06:59 +0000

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