The Courier-Mail

Bikies groom new breed of violent thugs

- EXCLUSIVE NEIL DOORLEY

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.”

 ??  ?? SIMPLE ADVICE: Ben Tullipan with wife Kerrie and
their children Sheridan, 8, and
Rory, 3.
SIMPLE ADVICE: Ben Tullipan with wife Kerrie and their children Sheridan, 8, and Rory, 3.

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