Hells Angels infiltrate Glitter Strip and are ‘problematic’ for bikie-busting cops

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(VIDEO)--A TOP cop vows not to let up on gangs despite membership at record lows, with feared groups the Comancheros and Hells Angels pushing to establish Gold Coast turf.

The Hells Angels are “problematic” and a “challenge”, according to Queensland’s top bikie police officer Mick Niland.

The international heavyweights of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gang (OMCG) world have long battled for a slice of the Gold Coast’s lucrative drug scene.

The Hells Angels previously didn’t have any turf on the Gold Coast but have moved in since other clubs scattered.

Their activities took a hit earlier this year when the state Crime and Corruption Commission busted open an alleged Main Beach cocaine and ice trafficking racket linked to the gang. However, police gave members a free ride through Waterford after a senior member’s funeral despite the en masse blast breaching strict laws against gathering in groups of more than three.

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The Comancheros which have chapters in other parts of Australia but not Queensland, were still pushing to gain a foothold on the Gold Coast despite only having a handful residing locally.

Detective Superintendent Niland, who last week revealed police data showing confirmed patched bikies plunging from 1158 to 696 in the past three-and-a-half years, said numbers were “low” on the Coast.

The Bandidos are still present but not the force they once were. Photo: Supplied

“But there will always be crime gang activity. The whole basis of OMCG is profit and greed from unlawful activities.

“OMCG are involved in a full ambit of criminality including drug trafficking, extortion and cold call investment fraud.”




Believed to have a sprawling Coast presence from Burleigh to Broadbeach, out to Varsity Lakes and — as of February — in Main Beach. The Queensland Crime and Corruption Commission swooped on the blue-chip suburb’s Tedder Avenue restaurant and boutique fashion strip three months ago, making arrests after probing what they alleged was a major cocaine and ice syndicate linked to the Hells Angels and using a Tedder Avenue upstairs office as a base. Det. Super. Niland: “They are problematic, they are a challenge — their links are national and international. But once again actual numbers are low in their regard too.”



The longtime Broadbeach-based Bandidos were largely responsible for the suburb’s infamous 2013 brawl which shocked diners and resulted in a public stand-off with police before bikies circled Southport police station demanding release of those arrested. Surfers Paradise MP John-Paul Langbroek would later refer to the situation as “anarchy”. It sparked the former Newman Government’s tough anti-bikie laws cracking down on any public association and clubhouses. Police alleged it was Bandidos responsible for two drive-by shootings of homes just north of the Gold Coast in late February and early March aimed at intimidating Rebels as part of a turf war. But as far as the Gold Coast group, Det. Supt. Niland says: “They have been decimated. They have a Tweed base, I believe they call themselves the north-end chapter.”



Like the Bandidos, police hope the usually Chinderah-based Mongols ranks have been slashed by recent drug busts. The Mongols are largely made up of ex-Finks who patched over in 2013. In late March, police seized $370,000 worth of cash, drugs, motorbikes and cars and cuffed four Gold Coast men and a woman after busting an alleged joint Comancheros and Mongols drug distribution ring including amphetamine, cocaine, MDMA and steroids. Det. Super. Niland: “Many of those members are before the courts on drug trafficking charges. Their strength now is only a handful but we continue to monitor them.”



The Currumbin crew are described as small but fierce and remain active. Currumbin MP Jann Stuckey flagged the return of Lone Wolf bikies to a clubhouse in a light industrial precinct with easy access to the Pacific Motorway late last year. They hit the headlines last week when CCTV footage emerged of two alleged Lone Wolf members jumping out of a hotel doorway in Coolangatta and blindsiding a man walking, brutally attacking him. They knocked him to the ground and continued to kick and punch him while he was down in broad daylight. Det. Super. Niland: “You saw some of them in action — thugs. A number of these persons are facing charges.”



Police believe their ranks are low with just a handful on the Coast. An associate was charged two months ago in relation to an alleged weapons racket, having tried to sell a gun to an undercover cop. Det. Supt. Niland: “Burleigh based, once again they have a handful of members. But they’re exactly the same as other OMCG — just generally on OMCG, their one goal is greed. They are heavily involved in trafficking of dangerous drugs and any other criminal activity which can result in profit.”



Police consider only a handful reside on the Coast but they have already generated headlines, with an associate accused of bashing a bus driver in Surfers Paradise in broad daylight and a gunshot incident at a central Broadbeach apartment. Police say the new arrivals are trying to get “established” on the Coast. Det. Supt. Niland: “They are a nasty serious organised crime gang, they have got chapters in other states. They have not got an established chapter here, but we know a handful are residing on the Gold Coast. “They certainly haven’t established and we will continue to disrupt their activities. At the moment they are in disarray as far as their Gold Coast chapter is concerned.”



Late last year the country’s biggest bikie gang which has a strong Sydney arm reportedly had a Nerang base with business interests in Surfers Paradise. A number of Rebels trying to quit the gang have been fleeing Sydney for the Gold Coast, believing it’s safer than Sydney where friends were dying more frequently. The death of Ricky Ciano, found in his car in a Sydney back road in February, remains a mystery. The 35-year-old married father who relocated to the Coast in 2015 after quitting the gang, is one of five deaths in two years of former members or members who were trying to leave. Det. Supt. Niland: “They are still over the border at Tweed Heads, they’re the largest gang in Queensland.”



Police say New Zealand’s fearsome Black Power and Mongrel Mob have emerged in a small way just north of the Gold Coast. Back in December, two Black Power members, including one who listed himself on social media as Gold Coast based posed for a photo in full colours and brandishing a handgun. Police claimed the Black Power were on a Gold Coast recruitment drive.

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