Bikies groom new breed of violent thugs
THOUSANDS of wannabe bikies are set to forge violent, criminal careers across the nation, according to intelligence received by the Australian Crime Commission.
The Courier-Mail can reveal the ACC recently completed a “classified assessment” into the next generation of thugs destined to carry out the bikies’ dirty work and help gangs “circumvent” unrelenting police pressure and tough laws.
The ACC targeted “feeder groups and associated clubs” of the nation’s 37 outlaw motorcycle gangs to identify prospective recruits keen to show bikies they are made of the “right stuff” and join them.
“’We have a national criminal target list, and we are working with partner agencies in Queensland to target those individuals and groups who pose the greatest risk,” ACC acting executive director operations Charlie Carver said.
“Outlaw motorcycle gangs (OMCGs) feature on that list, and automatically we are targeting anyone associated or affiliated with those groups, from a perspective of looking at their criminal movements into the future.”
ACC intelligence identified 5000 patched bikies in Australia, with another 800 prospects and more than 2000 associate members, some of feeder clubs.
Gang members, some as young as 18, are already posing a criminal threat by helping bikies run criminal enterprises despite the police crackdown and tough Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment (VLAD) and anti-association laws in the state.
The ACC states “prevalent motivations” include family ties, social connections and the “willingness to engage in street-level criminal activities on behalf of the OMCGs”.
“They are being groomed, and research across the world suggests the gangs will recruit heavily from these groups for members, nominees and prospects.”
While refusing to comment on the Palaszczuk Government’s review into the VLAD laws, Mr Carver said: “Any laws across Australia that make it harder for OMCGs, we will support them and we always have.
“When law enforcement does come into play in regards to new and varying strategies, OMCGs are very quick to change pace and circumnavigate those laws and legislative restrictions.”