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Saturday, 30 August 2008

Rocket-launchers were sold to Bandidos bikie gang

Australian army officer recently convicted for stealing rocket-launchers from a high-security military repository is also implicated by a former Bandidos bikie gang insider in at least one other criminal transaction where rocket-launchers were sold to bikies.His evidence suggests that many more of the armour-penetrating rocket-launchers may be in circulation in the criminal underworld than the nine officially acknowledged. Former Australian Crime Commission informant Stevan Utah, in hiding overseas, says he witnessed a separate weapons sale by then army captain Shane Della-Vedova from the one for which Della-Vedova was convicted earlier this year.
Della-Vedova is serving a 10-year prison sentence, but at his sentencing in May, his theft of 10 66mm M72 rocket-launchers was painted by his counsel as a "single very stupid mistake which has left his career in tatters". References were provided on his behalf by former army colleagues and much was made of his previously distinguished service record. Della-Vedova's job as an ammunition technician meant he was entrusted to dispose of huge amounts of military weaponry, including rocket-launchers, explosives and hand-grenades, often without any supervision. The court heard that he told police his theft of the rocket-launchers was accidental, that he "just panicked" when he realised he had mistakenly taken them off the base.
But Utah, a former informant with the Australian Crime Commission who helped state and federal police agencies investigate the Bandidos and other motorcycle gangs, said he witnessed Della-Vedova sell five more rocket-launchers to a senior member of the Bandidos in February 2005 -- nearly three years after the offences for which Della-Vedova was convicted. Utah trained as an army ammunition technician within a year of Della-Vedova in the late 1980s. They became friends. Utah said it was obvious at the time that there were huge holes in the military's security, and that until Della-Vedova's arrest in April last year, not much had changed. Utah, a convicted criminal, came forward to police with this information during the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation meeting in Sydney last year when he became aware that some of the weapons on which Della-Vedova was facing charges had been sold to alleged terrorists. One of the weapons was recovered, but the court heard that even after extensive raids and searches across western Sydney, nine of the weapons had still not been found. Court records show that Della-Vedova was entrusted with the disposal of as many as 323 rocket-launchers without any witnesses to their demolition. Utah's evidence suggests that at least five more of those weapons may have been sold to criminals. But a year after his approach to police during APEC, Utah has never been formally interviewed by any police agency.
Nothing that Utah alleged implicates Dean Stephen Taylor, Della-Vedova's co-accused, who was acquitted in late July of charges of possessing and receiving the stolen rocket-launchers and other weapons. When Mr Taylor walked free from the NSW District Court just over a month ago, he said he had "nothing to say at all" about a witness code-named Harrington, a former bikie and convicted drug supplier who testified that Mr Taylor had offered to supply him with the stolen military weapons.
Harrington had an undertaking from the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions that he would not be prosecuted under any federal laws in return for his evidence. But he has no such undertaking from NSW and the CDPP said that any prosecution of Harrington was a matter for NSW.

Gulf cartel blamed for beheadings of twelve people in southern Mexico

beheadings of twelve people in southern Mexico were probably the work of the powerful Gulf cartel based across the border from Texas, a state governor said on Friday.Eleven beheaded bodies with signs of torture were dumped outside the city of Merida in the Yucatan Peninsula on Thursday. A 12th beheaded body was found 50 miles away in a small town to the east of Merida, also showing signs of torture.
"This seems to be the work of the Gulf cartel," Yucatan Gov. Ivonne Ortega told reporters, adding that she had received several threats from suspected drug gangs over the past three months.Authorities say the cartel controls drug smuggling in seven states along the Gulf of Mexico from southern Mexico into Texas."We will have to see where the heads turn up. I am sure they will try something spectacular to shock society," she said.Three armed men were arrested on Friday after ignoring instructions to stop at a police checkpoint on the road between Merida and the popular Caribbean beach resort of Cancun, federal police said.The men fired shots at the checkpoint and police gave chase and captured and detained them on a dirt track. Inside the vehicle, police said they found three guns, an axe and more than 500 rounds of ammunition.The checkpoint had been set up because of the beheadings, although police did not say if the men arrested were suspected of being involved in the grisly killings.Investigators said the victims were drug dealers and all 12 had their heads cut off while they were still alive, reported the Reforma newspaper.

Two men suffered serious stab wounds Friday in a brawl in Germany involving the motorcycle gang Hell's Angels.

Two men suffered serious stab wounds Friday in a brawl in Germany involving the motorcycle gang Hell's Angels. Riot police separated the rival gangs after the battle outside a court building in the northern port city of Kiel.
Police said the court had been just about to start the trial of an accused for nearly stabbing a Hell's Angels member to death last year. The accused, who had recovered, and the victim, both with a crowd of supporters, met on a street outside the court Friday. Last year's Hell's Angel victim was stabbed again and rushed into intensive care, along with a second man. There were 20 arrests. Police did not disclose the other gang's name, except to say there had been a history of gang feuding between the two groups. The trial was adjourned.

authorities have linked a shooting and three stabbings to a Bloods-Crips feud.

Gang members are suspected in several crimes from Prince William County to Baltimore. In Washington's Trinidad neighborhood, where police are battling an increase in violence this year, young people are wearing the Bloods' colors and flashing their hand signs. However, police say they haven't tied the gang to any homicides in the neighborhood. Bloods and the Crips, well-known gangs on the West Coast, are a growing concern for law enforcement in the Washington area.
"We've started seeing more and more signs of the Crips and Bloods -- more Bloods than Crips," D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said. "We are seeing a growing presence in the graffiti, the clothing, the symbols." In Montgomery County, authorities have linked a shooting and three stabbings to a Bloods-Crips feud.
In February, a federal grand jury in Baltimore indicted 28 members of a gang called the Tree Top Piru Bloods on charges including murder, robbery, drug trafficking and witness intimidation. Bob Bermingham, gang prevention coordinator in Fairfax County, said in some cases, local crews are adopting the names of the well-known gangs. "They run around saying we are the Ravenswood Boys, and everybody says, 'So what?' " he said. "But if they say they're the Ravenswood Bloods, suddenly they have some credibility." But Capt. Bill Lynn, of the Prince George's County police, said "wannabes" can be just as dangerous because they have something to prove. The ranks of the two gangs are growing in part because men join the gangs for protection when they're in jail. When they get out, they bring other people into the groups.
Authorities said about 25 percent of the 1,300 inmates in the Prince George's jail are affiliated with gangs and that more than 60 percent of the gang members are Bloods. Virginia officials have identified about 2,000 Bloods and 700 Crips in state prisons.

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Grant Wilkinson self-taught gunsmith who ran an illegal arms factory converting replica submachine guns into lethal weapons has been sentenced to life

self-taught gunsmith who ran an illegal arms factory converting replica submachine guns into lethal weapons has been sentenced to life imprisonment, with a minimum term of 11 years. At least eight people, including a teenager, Michael Dosunmu, were killed by weapons converted by Grant Wilkinson in a shed in Berkshire…
Wilkinson, 34, of no fixed abode, was convicted yesterday at Reading crown court of buying replica MAC-10 submachine guns and converting them to fire. Police said his operation was one of the largest they had ever discovered. They believe it produced 90 guns used in a fifth of shootings in the capital over two years.The judge, Zoe Smith, passing sentence, said: “The scale of this criminal enterprise is unprecedented in this country. The roll call of deaths and injuries is horrific. Some 30 to 40 of these weapons are still unaccounted for, and regrettably but doubtlessly, the roll call of death and serious injury will continue to rise.”
Wilkinson bought the replica guns claiming to be involved in making a James Bond film.

Texas Syndicate prison gang Roy Arredondo, Jr., a/k/a “West,” 34, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade to life in prison, without parole.

Roy Arredondo, Jr., a/k/a “West,” 34, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade to life in prison, without parole. Arredondo, was the sillon, or chairman of the Dallas TS from 2003 until his arrest in April 2005, although there are some reports that he was the chairman as early as 2001. Arredondo, who pled guilty in March to conspiracy to conduct the affairs of a racketeering enterprise, has TS-related tattoos, including the overlaid letters “T” and “S” on his chest, and had a major role in several violent crimes committed by the Dallas TS, including the murders of Ernesto “Neto” Glavan, Peter Paul Pecina, Miguel “Big Mike” Elizondo, Mitchell “Cisco” Lozano, and Juan Silva Barrera, and the attempted murder of Ruben Rocha. Arredondo also admitted that he was responsible for trafficking drugs including approximately 270 kilograms of cocaine. Members of the TS are bound by a set of strict rules which ensure loyalty and participation in the enterprise’s criminal activities and are subject to strict and harsh discipline, including death, for violating the rules. The rules require that a member continue his participation in the organization even after his release from prison. Membership is for life.
Although TS rules exclude “shady” or “devious” characters, members who commit murders, aggravated assaults, robberies, or traffic in illegal drugs are not classified as being of bad character. Instead, this category is interpreted more narrowly to exclude child molesters and those who fail to follow the rules of the TS . Members and associates of the TS committed crimes to achieve the enterprise’s economic goal of making money as well as to enforce the rules of the organization. Victims of the violent crimes were often those who transgressed TS rules regardless of whether it was done knowingly or unknowingly. The remaining 13 defendants have pled guilty; all but two have pled guilty to the RICO statute. All will be sentenced within the next two months.

Scott Lazalde of Bellingham and James Rector of Ferndale, are members of the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club, which is made up of law enforcement officers

Grand jurors have indicted two Whatcom County men, a Seattle police officer and a Hells Angel biker shot during a bar fight earlier this month in Sturgis, South Dakota.

Five of the men, including Scott Lazalde of Bellingham and James Rector of Ferndale, are members of the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club, which is made up of law enforcement officers and firefighters. Lazalde and Rector both work for the Blaine sector of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.Joseph McGuire, 33, of Imperial Beach, Calif., was shot and injured Aug. 9 at the Loud American Roadhouse by Ronald Smith of Seattle, 43, a vacationing off-duty Seattle police detective, authorities said.
Both men are charged with alternative counts of aggravated and simple assault.
The four other men charged are Lazalde, 38; Rector, 44; Dennis McCoy, 59, a Seattle police sergeant, and Erik Pingel, 35, of Aurora, Colo. All were charged with carrying a concealed pistol without a permit and an alternative count of failure to abide by a permit of a reciprocal state.McGuire and Smith also face those charges, and Smith also is charged with perjury."The grand jury must've decided that Mr. Smith, having taken an oath to testify truly, in a state proceeding, stated intentionally and contrary to the oath, a material matter which he knew to be false," Meade County State's Attorney Jesse Sondreal wrote in an e-mail to the Associated Press.No court dates have been set.Ten people testified Thursday before the grand jury. On Aug. 10, 25 people appeared before the same panel, Sondreal told the AP.In a brief statement Thursday, the Seattle Police Department said only that its officers who were involved remain on paid administrative leave.Smith, who said after the shooting he had been attacked, had clashed with the Hells Angels before. In 2005, he pressed misdemeanor charges against the owner of a Seattle motorcycle shop, Anthony James Magnesi, for threatening him over the telephone.
Smith was twice disciplined in 2005, first for taunting fans at a Seattle Seahawks playoff game and later after he was accused of threatening to shoot a Tacoma restaurant manager. The first incident resulted in a two-day suspension, the second with a letter in Smith's file.He testified last year at a federal racketeering and murder trial involving members of the Washington Nomads chapter of the Hells Angels.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Five men found slain last week in a north Shelby County apartment were beaten and shocked in a brutal murder-for-hire related to drugs and money

Four men were arrested Monday and charged with capital murder in the case: Alejandros Castaneda, 31, and Juan Francisco Castaneda, 25, brothers who live in Birmingham; Rodriguez Jaime Duenas, 22, of San Antonio; and Christopher Scott Jones, 40, of Birmingham. All are in the Shelby County Jail under no bond. Five men found slain last week in a north Shelby County apartment were beaten and shocked in a brutal murder-for-hire related to drugs and money, authorities said Tuesday. Four men have been charged with capital murder in the slayings, which Shelby County Sheriff Chris Curry described during a news conference as being connected to a drug organization that transports cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. All the suspects either received or paid money in connection with the slayings, he said. Curry did not say how much the men were alleged to have been paid to do the killings, but he said the slayings may have been in retaliation for embezzling money from the drug organization. He said there are no books to check, but authorities believe the amount was in the neighborhood or $400,000 to $450,000, based on what they have been told. "It revolves around money, and that money revolves around drugs," Curry said. Curry said others may have been targeted for death and fled before authorities discovered the bodies. The bodies of Angel Horacio Vega-Gonzalez, 23, and his brother Gustavo Vega-Gonzalez, also known as Armando Lopez, 24; Ezequiel Rebollar-Terevan, 23; Jaime Echeverria, 30; and a fifth unidentified victim were discovered last Wednesday at Cahaba Lakes apartments off U.S. 280. Investigators believe that on Aug. 17 - three days before the discovery - the men were beaten and tortured with electric shocks, and their throats were cut, the sheriff said. Shelby County Coroner Diana Hawkins said her office is awaiting dental records to positively identify the fifth victim. Arrangements have been made by families to have the other four shipped to Mexico, Hawkins said.

Fernando Sanchez Arellano, nicknamed El Ingeniero .Two bodies were found Monday morning on a hillside, one with its head placed on its upper back.

Two bodies were found Monday morning on a hillside, one with its head placed on its upper back.The gruesome discoveries this week of five bodies, four of them decapitated, have shattered a period of relative calm and revived concerns that organized crime groups are escalating their battle for control of this border city.Three more bodies were discovered Tuesday morning in an illegal dump.
Their heads, charred from gasoline burns, were placed at their feet, according to the Baja California state attorney general's office.Authorities have not identified the victims.The attacks recalled the decapitations two years ago of three Rosarito Beach police officers.Authorities believe the recent victims may have been associates of the reputed leader of the Arellano Felix drug cartel, Fernando Sanchez Arellano, nicknamed El Ingeniero -- The Engineer.
Printed on the shirtless victims' backs was a taunting message: "We are people of the weakened engineer."Violence had declined significantly in recent months, and Alberto Capella Ibarra, Tijuana's secretary of public security, discounted the significance of this week's killings, comparing them to Los Angeles-area gang slayings that are barely noticed."The only difference here is how dramatic the deaths are," Capella said in an interview in his downtown office.
But Capella and others conceded that the savage nature of the crimes could signal a deadlier phase in the drug war as the Arellano Felix drug cartel fights rivals.
The cartel, once among the most powerful in Mexico, has been weakened in recent years by arrests and killings of its top bosses.Sanchez Arellano is said to have assumed control when his uncle, Francisco Javier Arellano Felix, was captured in 2006.In April, a gun battle between groups headed by Sanchez Arellano and a rival faction left 13 dead and appears to have split the cartel into two camps.
The head of the rival group, Teodoro Garcia Simental, moved to the state of Sinaloa, where he may have forged ties with a cartel based there, said Mexican law enforcement sources who spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk publicly on the subject.The recent deaths could be a sign that Garcia or one of his underlings may have launched an offensive to push out Sanchez Arellano with the help of powerful allies from Sinaloa.Such a scenario, some fear, could turn Tijuana into a battleground on par with the northern state of Chihuahua, where more than 800 deaths this year have been linked to drugs, the most of any Mexican state, according to a report by the Trans-Border Institute at the University of San Diego.
The Chihuahua death toll grew higher Tuesday when gunmen killed five people at a family gathering at a ranch. Also this month, cartel gunmen killed 13 people at a party in the tourist town of Creel, and eight people during a prayer service at a Ciudad Juarez drug rehabilitation center

two dozen police officers in seven vehicles were called to deal with a fight between rival gang members at a Dargaville restaurant

two dozen police officers in seven vehicles were called to deal with a fight between rival gang members at a Dargaville restaurant early on Saturday. Dargaville police Senior Sergeant Sue Leach said eight people were arrested as a result of the incident, which required the assistance of two Whangarei team police units and a dog handler. A member of the public called police to the Lyrik Restaurant in Gladstone St just after midnight on Friday when a karaoke evening erupted into a confrontation between members of the Stormtroopers and a rival gang. Mrs Leach said that, when police arrived, one member from each rival gang had obvious injuries. Up to 30 intoxicated people were drinking outside the restaurant, which is within the town liquor ban area, she said. The pavement was littered with broken bottles and the group refused to leave. Eight people were arrested for charges ranging from disorderly behaviour, assaulting police, breach of the liquor ban and being unlawfully on property. One man is being held in custody in Whangarei because of a previous warrant for arrest. Seven others were bailed to appear in the Dargaville District Court on Wednesday. When Dargaville police returned after dealing with the gang fight, they disturbed a 17-year-old youth in the yard behind the Dargaville Police Station. The youth was arrested and held in custody. Mrs Leach said police searched the youth's Dargaville address and found a substantial amount of property allegedly taken during burglaries in Dargaville and Whangarei over the past month. The youth is appearing in the Dargaville District Court today. In February last year, four people were arrested in connection with a burglary at the Dargaville Police Station when illegal drugs, police batons, cellphones, radios and other police equipment were stolen. The loot may have been carried away in a police patrol car later found torched near Dargaville.

Dozen men, some wielding weapons including golf clubs, baseball bats and spiked pieces of wood, were involved in the brawl

dozen men, some wielding weapons including golf clubs, baseball bats and spiked pieces of wood, were involved in the brawl which stretched over three roads in Easington Colliery.Police have carried out forensic tests in the streets of Cornwall, Cardiff and Corbett, which lie behind Station Road, and blood could still be seen on the pavements and on vehicles later in the day.Four local men, aged in their early 20s to mid-40s, were arrested after the major disturbance at about midnight yesterday on suspicion of violent disorder.It was expected they would be released on bail pending further inquiries once they were questioned by detectives.
Durham Police said a man had been arrested on suspicion of stealing a car and assault prior to the "running battle".The 26-year-old man, who sustained serious head injuries, is in Newcastle General Hospital, where his condition is said to be stable, but not life threatening, and detectives hope to speak to him about the attack at the earliest opportunity.Another four men received hospital treatment for injuries.A 45-year-old was taken to Sunderland Royal Hospital after sustaining wounds to his head and neck.The three others, aged 42, 33 and 21, were taken to the University Hospital of Hartlepool for treatment for minor injuries, mainly to their faces.One 26-year-old, who lives near the scene, said his partner saw a lad being pushed against their Renault Clio, which was left dented by the impact and stained with blood.The man, who lives with his 25-year-old girlfriend and did not want to be named, said: "He was pushed on the car and his father came to his aid and has been attacked himself around the back of the head."I don't know what's provoked the attack and it's been a crime scene ever since."Some residents said they thought the fight could be linked to the arrival of travellers who have been camped in a field on the nearby former pit site.They arrived late last week in the run-up to a horse fair held at the weekend, but it is thought those involved are local to the village and the fair passed without incident.The man added: "At first we thought it might be because of that, but apparently not and there's been no bother with it. It's pretty bad round here sometimes."

41-year-old Mihai Parvu was shot early Tuesday by another poker player over suspicions of cheating.

Gang shootings are rare in Romania. But there have been several clashes in Craiova between members of the underworld. Romanian police say they have deployed about 600 officers in a southern city where a gang leader was killed in a poker game.
Police spokeswoman Florentina Popescu says the police were sent to Craiova to keep rival gangs apart after 41-year-old Mihai Parvu was shot early Tuesday by another poker player over suspicions of cheating.Another man suffered stab wounds in the altercation and is reported in stable condition.Parvu died in the main hospital of the city, about 158 miles (255 kilometers) west of Bucharest.Dozens of rival gang members gathered outside the building.

San Pedro Sula's gangs do an excellent job of exterminating each other

On October 7, in the Central Penitentiary of San Pedro Sula, Honduras, the prison homeboys of the "MS" gang cranked up the volume of their dormitory's TV set. It was the day of the big Honduras-Jamaica soccer game, and the blasting soccer commentary covered the screams of ex-gang leader Geofredo Cortes Ortiz as two ornately tattooed MS members — both Hispanics from the U.S. — dragged him into the bathroom and hacked him to death with machetes. Their homeboys then joined in the symbolic rite of methodically cutting the dead man's body into little pieces and flushing them down the toilet. Revenge motivated the leaders of the U.S.-based MS, whose initials stand for "Salvatrucha Gang," to order Cortes killed. They blamed him for his failure, while leading the gang inside the penitentiary, to defend his members against an attack by rivals from the 18th Street gang. It had been the worst prison massacre in Honduran history: While the MS slept on the floor of their cramped dormitory, members of the "18" had sneaked in with homemade knives and steel pipes and killed 11 of Cortes's homeboys. The attackers then gutted their victims and triumphantly strung their intestines along the prison barbed-wire like party streamers. They also cut the ears off the corpses and tossed them over the wall for the stray dogs. "It was a grotesque barbarity," says prison psychologist Oscar Suazo. "After it was all over, the 18's were laughing and flashing the gang sign." Cortes had been transferred out of the Central Penitentiary soon after the killings, but after he turned to religion, prison authorities sent him back, hoping he could tame his own gang. And that cost him his life. The murder illustrates how Hispanic gangs in U.S. cities are spreading their terror all over Central America. Deported to El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, these delinquents not only imported the mystique of U.S. gang culture — its neo-Nazi tattoos, rap music, baggy trousers and "homey" slang — but they also brought crack cocaine, semi-automatic weapons, home-made bombs and a level of calculated aggression not seen in the region since the insurgencies and counterinsurgencies of the '70s and '80s. Coming from the U.S. gives a deportee the edge over the local gang-bangers. "These kids might have been low-level gang members back in the States, but when they come here, they're like the Nike of the gang world," says Magdalena Rose Avila, founder of Homeys Unidos, which helps deported gang members settle into Salvadoran society. "One guy I know recruited 60 or 70 soldiers to his gang in six months." Outgunned and underfunded local police forces are overwhelmed by this lethal American export. Tiny El Salvador has over 55,000 gang members, including some 10,000 deportees. San Pedro Sula, a city of half a million Hondurans, has over 35,000 — and only one police officer who handles gangs. "About all I can do," says Magdalenys Centeno, "is see who shows up at the gang funerals and take their photos." According to Centeno, almost all the leaders of local gangs Control Machete, The Junk, Poison, Crezi Kids, MS and 18 are deportees from the U.S. "They're much more violent than anything we'd seen before," she says.
The wave of returning gang members hit Central America in the mid-'90s, when the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) was given more power to hunt down and prosecute illegal aliens. According to the INS, the number of criminal deportations to Mexico and Central America has doubled since 1995 to 62,359 last year. INS officials concede that many of these "removals" belonged to gangs, either in prisons or in Hispanic neighborhoods back in the U.S. In Florida and New York, aliens in jail for criminal acts are given a choice halfway through their term to either be deported immediately or serve out their stretch and then be deported. Most go quickly, not realizing that violent death may await them in Central America.
Both the 18th Street and MS were originally started by Salvadorans in Los Angeles to fight the Mexican gangs, and then spread to San Francisco, New York and Washington, D.C. They thrive on robberies, extortion and "taxing" the street drug dealers. Says Russ Bergeron, INS media director, "We have a fundamental obligation to protect our American citizens from the threat posed by gang violence." And however ill-equipped Central American countries may be to cope with these criminals bred in U.S. cities, other governments have an obligation to take back their nationals, says the INS. But as San Pedro Sula's regional director of criminal investigations, Pastor Ortiz, complains, "If American police with all their resources can't control the gangs in their cities, what can we do? We have nothing."
Until the homeboy invasion, local gangs got by with knives or primitive steel-pipe guns. They got drunk and maybe smoked a little grass. But that all changed under the deportees' murderous influence. The pipe guns were replaced with AK-47s and Uzis, and the marijuana with crack, which in San Pedro Sula sells for only $4.25 a "rock." Now, gang members aspire to have a teardrop tattooed on their cheek, to signify they've killed a rival. The new-look gangs quickly began shaking down grocery shops, factory girls and bus passengers for "taxes." They hijacked buses for drive-by shootings in rivals' neighborhoods, and began raping local girls, some as young as six, according to San Pedro Sula police. The inability of the police to tackle the gangs has spawned vigilante groups such as El Salvador's Sombra Negra (Black Shadow), which has been gunning down deported youths since 1994. Death squads have caught on in Honduras, too, where human rights workers say they've killed over 180 gang members over the past two years. Suspected of being off-duty cops and soldiers hired by local businessmen, these groups are not particularly discriminating. "Any kid who has a tattoo is fair game," says Human Rights Commission member Hugo Maldonado. Sociologist Ernesto Bordales concurs. "The general feeling here is that the only way to deal with the gangs is to kill them all. "
But many of the vigilantes are simply local men pushed too far by the gang- bangers' reign of terror. Last Spring in Villanueva, a shantytown on the edge of San Pedro Sula, homeboys, high on crack, raped and killed a young teenage girl and her mother, hacking their breasts off. The screams brought neighbors who, according to Villanueva police chief Valentino Sandoval, "more or less lynched the gang". After that, there was no shortage of armed men volunteering for nightly anti-gang patrols.
Just as often, though, San Pedro Sula's gangs do an excellent job of exterminating each other. Seventeen-year-old Cesar was spotted ambling down the street in his liquid, druggy gait by a bunch of 18 members. Once they zeroed in on the MS tattoos on his forehead, Cesar was cornered and shot four times, in the chest, his shoulders and legs. His wounds healed, he and seven other gang members are sitting in a muddy backyard behind an empty house. The homeboy who lives there with his mother is a crackhead who has pawned off everything in the house except for a photograph on the wall of his runaway father.
In the alley, a white jeep with smoky windows rumbles by, and the MS boys leap up. The 18 have been driving around the neighborhood in a similar white jeep, smashing in doors of MS houses and spraying everybody inside, grandmothers and children, with Uzis. Isidra Benegas, the mother of the crackhead, curses, "These deportees from the U.S. are to blame. They've brought the crack and the killing." A flicker of guilt crosses Cesar's face. He belonged to an MS chapter in Eagle Pass, Texas, before he was deported back to Honduras. "It's either live in the gang, or die," he retorts. And Cesar knows his death may be riding in the next passing car.

The Sons of Silence, one of the country’s biggest outlaw biker gangs.

The Sons of Silence, one of the country’s biggest outlaw biker gangs. With its headquarters in Colorado, the Sons of Silence (SOS) are known as “one-percenters” — the term given to those that operate on the fringes of an otherwise law-abiding motorcycle community. One-percenters are dedicated to principles of personal freedom and the right to self-expression. Membership is by invitation only and their motto is Donecmors non separat — Latin that is intended to translate as “Until death separates us”. At first sight, an alliance of white supremacists and biker gang members seems an odd one. Edward Winterhalder, former leader of a rival biker gang known as the Bandidos and now an author on gang culture, said: “Most of them are just regular guys who work during the week and have a little too much fun at the weekends. The majority of them are law-abiding, have families. They’re just regular neighbourhood guys. “They love their Harley-Davidson motorcycles and love their brotherhood and the camaraderie of riding their bikes. They are very pro-government, they stand behind the flag. This is something they would never be involved in. Working with white supremacists would be an extremely unusual partnership.”
But Steve Cook, president of the Mid-West Outlaw Motorcycle Gang Investigations Association, said that the gangs were known to have a sub-culture — and a bad element — that could sit comfortably with racist extremism.
“I have personally seen SOS members wearing hats that say ‘Dirty White Boy’, T-shirts with swastikas and other Nazi regalia. “I don’t believe that even a group like the SOS would knowingly, as an organisation, get themselves involved in something like this because nothing good can come of it for them. “But would it be out of the realms for some of their associates or a member to do something like this on his own? No. Anything is in play.”

Louis Vuitton, Luella Bartley, Marc Jacobs, Anya Hindmarch and Sonia Rykiel are just a few of the shops targeted by "scooter gangs"

Louis Vuitton, Luella Bartley, Marc Jacobs, Anya Hindmarch and Sonia Rykiel are just a few of the shops targeted by "scooter gangs" - criminals on mopeds who drive through the windows and take what they want. Oddly, they don't clear out the shop; rather, they pick and choose very specific handbags. This suggests they are taking orders, possibly for collectors who don't want to wait. It's all speculative at this point, as tracking of the stolen goods has proved unsuccessful. Bold smash-and-grab thefts of handbags in London's upscale designer shops are increasing, reports British Vogue in the September issue. Metropolitan Police say the gangs work in groups of six or more young men, and there are currently about six gangs operating in London. They work for a middleman who shifts the goods which are thought to be transported overseas, "likely Russia and the United Arab Emirates where you can still get a high price for a designer bag."Designers aren't only hit at the retail level. In August 2007, a shipment of shoes that Alice Temperley had co-designed with Christian Louboutin for her S/S 2008 collection in New York was stolen during transport in Italy during what appears to be a planned hijacking. Oddly, they've never turned up anywhere. More devastating is that some thefts could potentially ruin careers. Christopher Kane, one of London's brightest new talents, was burglarised eight days before the start of last September's London fashion week. Ignoring the neighbouring photography studios filled with expensive equipment, the thieves entered Kane's and carefully hand-picked items, says Kane "as if they were in a shop". Fortunately, he was able to remake the missing pieces in time to show his third collection, which was a hit. Had the entire collection been stolen, Kane acknowledges that in "such an unforgiving industry" he would have been "ruined".

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

federal grand jury in Erie has indicted 13 people on charges they trafficked in cocaine.

federal grand jury in Erie has indicted 13 people on charges they trafficked in cocaine. Though some of the 13 defendants are accused of working together, they are not accused of being part of the same overall conspiracy.The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Erie announced the indictments today. The indictments grew out of investigations by the FBI-led task Erie Area Gang Law Enforcement force, which focuses on large-scale drug operations.Most of the defendants are from Erie, and two are from Detroit. According to the indictments, the defendants are:
Rashad L. Williams, 22, of the 2400 block of McKinley Avenue, and Lamar A. Owens, 30, formerly of Las Vegas. They are accused of conspiracy to traffic in powder cocaine and crack cocaine, and Owens is accused of two counts of possessing powder cocaine and crack cocaine with the intent to distribute.Williams was also indicted in another case with Shawn T. Howard, 25, of the 800 block of West 19th Street. They are each accused of conspiracy to traffic in crack cocaine and possessing crack cocaine with the intent to distribute.Marvin T. Jones, 40, of the 300 block of East 14th Street, is accused of possessing crack cocaine with the intent to distribute.
Marcus D. Knight, 40, of the 1800 block of Buffalo Road, is accused of one count each of possessing crack cocaine with the intent to distribute and possessing cocaine base with the intent to distribute.Gilbert Jordan Sr., 50, of the 700 block of East 25th Street, is accused of one count each of possessing crack cocaine with the intent to distribute and possessing cocaine base with the intent to distribute.
Devoe D. Pickering, 27, of the 1600 block of German Street, is accused of possessing cocaine base with the intent to distribute.Samuel Tirado, 28, formerly of Erie, is accused of possessing cocaine base with the intent to distribute.
Robert J. Carver, 28, of Erie, but with no address listed, is accused of three counts of possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute and one count of carrying a firearm during a drug-trafficking crime.
Christopher G. Bowersox, 36, of the 2800 block of Atlantic Avenue, Millcreek Township, is accused of possessing cocaine base with the intent to distribute.
John C. Bisbee, 27, of the 100 block of Parade Street, is accused of possessing cocaine base with the intent to deliver.
Carl D. Smith, 35, and Ronald W. Thomas, 58, are accused of one count each of conspiracy to traffic in powder cocaine. Smith is also accused of one count of manufacturing cocaine base and possessing it with the intent to distribute.
The FBI previously charged Smith, with the indictment replacing those charges.

Jesus Espinosa of the Hermanos Pistoleros Latinos gang was sentenced

The purported leader of a gang that stole loads of cocaine and methamphetamine in home robberies and carjackings was sentenced to life in prison Monday.Five others sentenced Monday on drug and weapons charges included Robert Ortega-Martinez, 28, sentenced to 34 years; Ricardo Villegas, 28, sentenced to 26 years; Eduardo Ontiveros-Trevino, 37, sentenced to 17 years; Jaime Alberto Saavedra, 29, sentenced to 10 years, and Victor Marquez, 28, sentenced to 10 years.Jesus Espinosa, 30, of the Hermanos Pistoleros Latinos gang was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Randy Crane for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.Espinoza and 14 others, some from his gang and others from another group, were earlier convicted on various charges stemming from drug robberies in McAllen in 2006, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Espinoza's gang typically stole the drugs at gunpoint after receiving tips from the other group.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Peter Mitchell hit sitting with a number of associates drinking in the El Jardin bar

Peter Mitchell was sitting with a number of associates drinking in the El Jardin bar which is a hundred yards away from his own premises when the hitman struck on Thursday night.The gun man thought by locals to be a Moroccan hired by a drug gang – jumped out of a car and ran towards Mitchell.As Mitchell ran to the back of the bar to make his escape it is understood that the gun man fired at least four shots hitting him twice in the shoulder.According to eyewitnesses, the potential killer slipped and fell as he ran and as a result two innocent Irish people were hit by stray bullets.The hitman ran to a waiting car which was found burned-out some time later.
Yesterday, Mitchell was described by the Costa del Sol Hospital as not being in any danger. He was surrounded by his cronies and wife Sonia Walsh in a private room at the hospital.His cousin Christy Mitchell, who acts as his relation’s bodyguard, answered the phone in the gangster’s hospital room. The convicted drug dealer who is also from the inner city told a reporter: “Peter’s not around, he’s gone out for a jog but he wouldn’t speak anyway. We don’t speak to journalists.”Two other men one of whom is believed to be Irish were shot in a separate incident in the early hours of yesterday morning.The men got into a row at the trendy Nikki Beach, a venue popular with Irish and UK expats and holiday makers, in the resort of Elviria 10 minutes from Marbella town centre.Although some of those involved in the shooting are associates of Mitchell’s, it is understood the shooting was the result of a drunken and cocaine-fuelled row that got out of control.As a result of the shooting incidents, which have claimed five casualties in just over 24 hours in Marbella, the Spanish police are expected to launch a major offensive against the crime gangs who are destroying one of the wealthiest holiday hot spots in Spain.

Saturday, 23 August 2008

The notorious Queensland bikie gang, also reportedly the world's largest Big Twin Harley-Davidson club, is expected to roll into the Sunshine Coast

outlaw motorcycle gang, the Rebels, will be closely monitored by police during their overnight stay on the Sunshine Coast this weekend.The notorious Queensland bikie gang, also reportedly the world's largest Big Twin Harley-Davidson club, is expected to roll into the Sunshine Coast today wearing full club colours - red, blue and white.The Australian Crime Commission has said the Rebels are a major player in the drug trade and are heavily involved in organised crime.Yet Queensland police media virtually sanctioned the outlaw gang yesterday, warning drivers to expect delays as the club wound its way through the city before heading to the Sunshine Coast and Brisbane.Police are expecting close to 600 Rebels members to attend a function at the Kunda Park clubhouse tonight as part of the gang's compulsory national run.
Superintendent Ben Hanbidge said the outlaw motorcycle gang would be watched closely during its stay."It's no secret that we have adopted a very strong approach to (outlaw motorcycle gangs), not only on the Sunshine Coast but right throughout the North Coast Region, and we will continue to target their unlawful activities," Superintendent Hanbidge said."I don't want them here, and I am sure that the majority of the Sunshine Coast community probably don't want them here, and whilst we can't prevent them from coming, we will do everything we can to make it uncomfortable for them and will be watching their activities very closely.
"Action will be taken where there is any evidence of traffic violations or anti-social behaviour."It is believed the bikies will return to Brisbane on Sunday.

Detective Ron Smith filed charges against a Seattle Hells Angel in 2005, alleging that Anthony James Magnesi, a member of the Washington Nomads

off-duty Seattle police detective who shot and seriously wounded a Hells Angel in a bar fight at a South Dakota motorcycle rally earlier this month has clashed with a member of the outlaw motorcycle club before, according to court records, police reports and interviews.Detective Ron Smith filed charges against a Seattle Hells Angel in 2005, alleging that Anthony James Magnesi, a member of the Washington Nomads chapter of the Hells Angels, had threatened him over the phone.Magnesi, in turn, recorded one of their phone conversations and gave it to the police department's Office of Professional Accountability (OPA), claiming it was Smith who had threatened him.An internal investigation was opened, and the incident was referred to Smith's supervisor as a training issue, according to OPA officials.The misdemeanor criminal charges filed by Smith against the biker were dismissed after Magnesi's lawyers played the tape for city prosecutors, according to Magnesi's attorney, Paul Bernstein, and court records.On a copy of the tape given to The Seattle Times by Bernstein, Smith calls Magnesi a "dirtbag," taunts him about suspected criminal activity — although Magnesi was not under investigation by Smith and has never been convicted of a serious crime — and tells him "you better watch your back."Smith tells Magnesi that simply "being a member of the Hells Angels outlaw motorcycle gang is a ... crime."The detective also boasts that he's a member of the biggest "gang" of all: "It's called law enforcement. You got it?"The recording contains only Smith's side of the conversation — what Magnesi is saying can't be heard. Bernstein said the recording device was set up that way.Magnesi declined to be interviewed for this story, but gave Bernstein permission to discuss the incident.Officer an avid biker, tooSmith, an avid biker himself and a member of the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club, which draws its riders from police and firefighters, frequently opines about the scourge of "outlaw bikers" in a regular column he writes as editor of The Guardian, the Seattle Police Officer Guild's newspaper.
It is not known whether Smith's apparent contempt for the Hells Angels played a role in the incident in Sturgis, S.D. What is known is that, among an estimated 500 revelers at the Loud American Roadhouse early on the morning of Aug. 9, it was Smith who wound up in a confrontation with members of the gang.
Smith won't talk about it or his earlier run-in with Magnesi, and the Seattle Police Department is withholding comment pending a criminal investigation by a grand jury in Meade County, S.D., said spokesman Sgt. Sean Whitcomb. The grand jury reconvenes on Wednesday.Authorities in South Dakota have also declined to comment on the investigation.The Seattle Police Department is conducting an internal investigation into the incident, and the command staff will review the use of deadly force in a separate inquiry.Smith says that he was "cold-cocked" by a Hells Angel and then jumped by others. He has said the assault was unprovoked and that he was fighting for his life with as many as three Hells Angels when he pulled a handgun and shot one of them.Joseph McGuire, a Hells Angel from Imperial Beach, Calif., was seriously wounded in the shooting.Smith, 43, was working as a theft detective in Seattle's Southwest Precinct in May 2005 when Magnesi called him from Lucky's Choppers, his custom motorcycle business on Airport Way South. Magnesi had "heard I had been talking about him" and wanted to know why, Smith wrote in a police report on the incident.Magnesi, Bernstein said, learned of Smith's inquiries through a friend, who had given him the detective's telephone number.Smith acknowledges in his report, and on the tape, that he "has no business" with Magnesi. Nor does he ever explain why he was asking around about him.Magnesi called from a blocked number, but Smith was able to determine where the call was coming from and told him so.
"Suspect Magnesi informed in a sarcastic tone that he knew where I worked as well," Smith wrote.
"Based on the fact that he is known to me as an armed and dangerous person ... and associated with the Hells Angels I took his assertion that he knew where I worked as a veiled threat."Bernstein pointed out that Magnesi had just called the detective at his desk at the police station: "Of course he knew where he worked. How is that a threat?"
"Armed and dangerous"
Smith's reference to Magnesi being "armed and dangerous" involved a 2003 arrest for assault in which Magnesi allegedly threatened three people with a handgun in downtown Seattle, firing a shot between the legs of one of the victims.
When Magnesi was arrested, police confiscated a handgun, a concealed-carry permit and Magnesi's Hells Angel jacket and patches — his "colors," considered sacrosanct by members — which were never returned, Bernstein says.
Bernstein says Magnesi believes that Smith has them, although Smith denies it on the recording. The detective says he wouldn't "want my hands on the filthy red and white."By the time of the phone calls, the assault charges had been dropped because the witnesses refused to testify. One claimed he was contacted by a man thought to be Joshua Binder, the Nomads' onetime "enforcer" and a member of the "Filthy Few" — Hells Angels who have killed for the club — and told not to testify, according to court records.No witness-intimidation charges were ever filed.
Binder and several other Nomads were convicted last year of conspiracy and racketeering, and Binder admitted to a role in the murder of a man who posed as a club member.Smith testified briefly at their federal trial about a run-in he had while a bicycle officer with Binder and another Hells Angel in a bar in Pioneer Square. Both men were carrying guns.Magnesi called Smith a second time that same morning, this time recording the conversation without telling the detective. Washington is a two-party consent state, meaning that everyone involved in taped conversations must be told they're being recorded.Bernstein acknowledges this, but says the law has an exception where threats are involved. No charges were filed in connection with the tape.Once Smith figures out he's being recorded, he tells Magnesi that "playing on the telephone ... is a crime."Telling a police detective that you know where he works at is a bigger crime, OK? Being a member of the Hells Angels Outlaw motorcycle gang is even a bigger crime."
Smith has been disciplined twice by the department. In 2005, he was suspended for two days for conduct unbecoming an officer after taunting fans at a Seahawks football game. That same year, he had a verbal altercation with a restaurant employee.In the first instance, he received two days off. The second incident resulted in a letter in his file.

Chad Wilson, and John Midmore two Hells Angels bikers are charged with shooting at and injuring six members of a rival gang, the Outlaws,

Trial of Chad Wilson, 32, of Lynnwood, Wash., and John Midmore, 34, of Valparaiso, Ind. will kick off this fall in a Minnehaha County courtroom.The two Hells Angels bikers are charged with shooting at and injuring six members of a rival gang, the Outlaws, at the 2006 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.To accommodate witnesses, the trial won't start until November. That's the latest in a series of complicated procedural delays that have stalled the trial. But here's a timeline of the events so far.
Two men pull up outside Legion Lake Resort in Custer State Park in the afternoon and open fire on a small group of people, according to witnesses at a campground across the street. Six are injured - five by gunfire - and the men speed away.
The same night, Wilson and Midmore are arrested and charged with five counts of attempted murder. The South Dakota Attorney General's Office identifies the victims as members or associates of the Outlaws and Wilson as a member of the Hells Angels. Midmore was described as a prospect for the Hells Angels. Experts and law enforcement officials say the two gangs have been at war.In the first court action, Custer County States Attorney Tracey Kelley argues successfully that the Hells Angels are capable of coming up with massive amounts of bail money. Bail for Wilson and Midmore is set at $5 million each. Court documents say authorities found a .40 caliber magazine on the floorboard of a truck leased to Wilson, and that investigators collected 16 spent cartridges from the scene.The rally ends without retaliation, as the Outlaws pack up their campground and leave the Black Hills.
Both suspects are arraigned in Rapid City. Wilson is charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit a crime. Midmore is charged with five counts of aiding, abetting or advising attempted first-degree murder and a count of conspiracy. Both plead not guilty in what the judge calls a "free-for-all shooting."The trial of Wilson and Midmore is scheduled for June.
The trial is postponed until Sept. 24 because of an argument over defense requests to have evidence - a gun clip - tested by their own expert.After the trial is again delayed, prosecutors protest Circuit Judge John Delaney's decision, at the request of the defense, to seal documents from an independent test on a vehicle allegedly used in the crime. Prosecutors also object to closed meetings between the judge and defense attorneys. The South Dakota Supreme Court agrees to hear the appeal, further delaying the trial.Arguing before the state Supreme Court, special prosecutor and Beadle County State's Attorney Michael Moore says prosecutors should have been present for the meetings about evidence.The high court agrees with the prosecutor. Delaney's ruling regarding testing of the truck is overturned. A hearing should have been held to allow arguments from both prosecutors and defense lawyers before Delaney dealt with the defense request to examine a pickup that is evidence in the case, the high court said.Retired Judge Gene Paul Kean hears the case as Midmore and Wilson plead not guilty to new, superceding counts: one count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of commission of a felony while armed. Kean rejected prosecutors' requests to include information about previous convictions.The judge rules in favor of a motion to bring the case to Sioux Falls. The trial is scheduled for Nov. 3.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Mike Gordon, 33, had bought and sold a number of properties for the UN gang's jailed leader Clayton Roueche

Chilliwack realtor gunned down in his car late Wednesday was closely associated with the notorious United Nations criminal organization, The Vancouver Sun has learned.
In fact, Mike Gordon, 33, had bought and sold a number of properties for the UN gang's jailed leader Clayton Roueche. Roueche, an accused international trafficker, is scheduled to go to trial in Seattle Sept. 8 on a series of cocaine- and marijuana-smuggling charges. Gordon, who worked for the Surrey office of Best Bet Realty, was shot to death about 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 5600-block of Promontory Road in Chilliwack. Chilliwack RCMP said Gordon was known to them and was killed in a targeted slaying. The UN gang has suffered a number of blows in recent months, at the hands of both law enforcement agencies and gangland rivals. Gordon's slaying comes just a month after another UN realtor, Elliott (Taco) Castaneda, was shot to death in Guadalajara, Mexico along with the gang's Mexican connection, Ahmet (Lou) Kaawach. Castaneda had been working for Abbotsford's Homelife Realty, but resigned from his job in June. At his wake in the Fraser Valley city July 25, police searched mourners and seized two guns.

Open-air drug market in the Englewood area that authorities believe had ties to the Gangster Disciples was shut down

Open-air drug market in the Englewood area that authorities believe had ties to the Gangster Disciples was shut down, Chicago police said Wednesday.Police conducted 19 undercover crack cocaine buys during a six-month sting that monitored drug sales in a block of West 56th Street between South Elizabeth Street and South Racine Avenue, police said in a news release.Six people were arrested on drug charges during Operation Lackawanna, and police are looking for two people who allegedly sold drugs on the block.Police said it was the 47th open-air drug market that has been shut down this year.

Rene Tercero Reyes Aguirre was shot by an armed gang who broke into his home in Juarez, Mexico.

Five-time Mexican supercross champion was brutally murdered in his home by a biker gang on Monday.Rene Tercero Reyes Aguirre was shot by an armed gang who broke into his home in Juarez, Mexico.Two friends of the 24 year old rider were also murdered in the attack, which followed a series of violent gang-related attacks in the town on Monday that left a total of 11 people dead.The violence raged on into Tuesday, when a further three people were killed.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Hells Angels thought a Christian motorcycle ministry was claiming an affiliation with them

violent brawl may have started because the Hells Angels thought a Christian motorcycle ministry was claiming an affiliation with them, according to court documents made public Thursday.
The 52-page search warrant affidavit, filed in Orange County Superior Court, also cites an anonymous tipster who called police shortly after the July 27 brawl and said the Set Free Soldiers were planning a "war party" at an abandoned chicken farm in Riverside County.
One member had readied a "truckload of guns" there, the caller told authorities.
Set Free's leader, Phillip Aguilar, and four other biker ministers were charged with weapons and gang felonies after the fight at a Newport Beach bar that ended in two stabbings. The dust-up prompted police to raid the Set Free Christian Ministries compound in Anaheim, where they allegedly recovered thousands of rounds of ammunition and dozens of guns and knives. They also raided Hells Angels homes in Costa Mesa and Rancho Santa Margarita. Attorneys for Aguilar and the Set Free Soldiers didn't immediately return calls seeking comment on Thursday.
Aguilar, 60, started his counterculture church in 1982 after saying he found Jesus while doing time in the state penitentiary for child abuse. His church, which prides itself on its outreach to criminals, drug addicts and biker gangs, has attracted thousands of members nationwide and operates several drug rehab homes around Southern The brawl began at Blackie's By the Sea, when five Hells Angels met with Aguilar and two other Set Free Soldiers, according to police reports and the affidavit. During am argument, eight other Set Free Soldiers entered the bar and surrounded the Hells Angels, who then began throwing punches. Police have said they believe the Set Free Soldiers initiated the meeting and wanted to ambush the Hells Angels. One Set Free pastor caught fleeing with a bloody knife in his car told police the brawl began when the Hells Angels' leader confronted Aguilar and told him Set Free had been claiming affiliation with the Hells Angels, the documents state.
The Hells Angel leader allegedly told Aguilar they were not authorized to take business from the Hells Angels. Set Free member Glenn Schoeman told police he was afraid the Hells Angels would now be "greenlighted" to kill him and other Set Free members since they had drawn blood in the fight, the documents state. Schoeman has since been charged with a felony count of concealing evidence in the stabbing for allegedly hiding the knife, as street terrorism and gang enhancements.

Jonathan Gonzalez whose street name was "Redbone," died early Wednesday from gunshot wounds

Reputed member of West Oakland's Acorn drug gang died early Wednesday from gunshot wounds sustained Tuesday night in East Oakland, police said.
He was identified as Jonathan Gonzalez, 21, whose street name was "Redbone," police said.A 34-year-old man who said he was Gonzalez's cousin was also wounded. His name was not released, and police were not sure if he lived in Oakland or Emeryville.
The shooting happened about 9:53 p.m. Tuesday at a housing project in the 1200 block of 65th Avenue.The older man told police he and Gonzalez were walking back from a store when they were confronted by a man with a gun who began shooting at them. Both men were hit several times by gunfire.Gonzalez died from his wounds at 2:29 a.m. Wednesday at Highland Hospital. The other man was in critical condition at a local hospital.The survivor told police he did not know why the man shot them, nor what he and Gonzalez were doing in East Oakland.One investigator said Gonzalez "may have got caught slippin," a street term for someone who gets overconfident about their safety and is not as careful as they should be.Police said Gonzalez has been seen lately in East Oakland and was arrested Aug. 1 in the 5900 block of Bromley Avenue — a few blocks from where he was fatally shot — on suspicion of selling drugs, but was not charged.Police said numerous people witnessed the shooting, and at least 30 people were present when officers first arrived on the scene. However, so far no one has been willing to talk to police.Sgt. Jim Rullamas said there could be several motives for the killing.Police said there was not enough evidence to arrest Gonzalez in a police roundup of the Acorn gang June 17 that followed a two-month investigation focusing on drug dealing, shootings and other acts of violence linked to the group. More than 50 suspected members were jailed and are being prosecuted.
Police said Gonzalez had been shot at least once in the past and was suspected of but never charged in several gang-related shootings.Police said Gonzalez was ambushed Jan. 31, 2006, by four suspected members of the Lower Bottoms gang, another violent West Oakland group, outside a store at 8th and Adeline streets.Gonzalez was wounded in the arm, but one of the bullets killed Gamel Attayeb, 25, a San Leandro father of two who was about to go into the store. Police described Attayeb as "a totally innocent victim."The four arrested and charged in the shooting were all convicted earlier this year of counts ranging from first degree murder to second degree murder to voluntary manslaughter; all counts included gang enhancement clauses. The gunman got life in prison without parole, another man got 15 years to life, another 24 years and the fourth a 14-year sentence.Gonzalez's killing was Oakland's 87th homicide of the year. Last year at this time, there were 85 homicides.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Vancouver-based Red Scorpions gang that aggressively expanded in the capital city's drug trade by threatening other dealers and giving free crack

The Red Scorpions are considered to be one of the most violent gangs in B.C. and members have been identified as suspects in the slaughter of six people in a Surrey highrise in October 2007.Victoria police say they've dismantled a chapter of the Vancouver-based Red Scorpions gang that aggressively expanded in the capital city's drug trade by threatening other dealers and sometimes giving crack cocaine away for free.Police arrested six people, in their late teens and early 20s, last week and raided a Saanich house -- on Borden Street, near McKenzie Avenue -- they called the base of operations for a burgeoning Greater Victoria "dial-a-dope" operation.In addition to the arrests, police seized $3,000 in cash, $1,000 in cocaine and a loaded sawed-off shotgun, said Const. Colin Brown, a lead investigator.The raid was the culmination of a month-long undercover operation by the Greater Victoria Regional Crime Unit, and Victoria and Saanich police. Plainclothes officers bought crack cocaine from dealers downtown, said Brown."We certainly believe that we've made a dent in this group," said Brown.During the undercover work, police identified 11 people they thought were either members or associates of the Red Scorpions. Six were arrested and face court dates this week. Two are in custody for unrelated charges, and three remain on the loose and are wanted, say police.Those arrested face a variety of drug trafficking and possession for the purpose of trafficking charges. They are to appear in court this week. Victoria police will ask the court to ban some of them from returning to Vancouver Island, said Brown.
The Red Scorpion gang was recruiting members in Victoria by distributing free crack cocaine with a phone number for orders it filled 24 hours a day, said Brown. The Scorpions were also "very aggressive" to other dealers and police were concerned about the potential for future violence, said Brown.
It was established in the Lower Mainland eight years ago by a group of young men who met each other in a youth detention facility and has grown over the years. Many members have a "RS" tattoo on their wrists, neck or shoulders.
Two years ago, several Red Scorpions were arrested in connection with a large crack cocaine "dial-a-dope" operation in Coquitlam, Burnaby, New Westminster and Port Moody. After 10 accused in the ring pleaded guilty, it was believed the Scorpions had been disbanded but police said earlier this year the gang was still active.
Sgt. Shinder Kirk, of the B.C. Integrated Gang Task Force, said he's aware people in Victoria are affiliated with the Red Scorpions, but he didn't know whether they are associates or members.He said many individuals will operate under the moniker of certain groups, such as the Scorpions, in a franchise-type situation in order to intimidate and sell their drugs. "No community is immune; if there's a market for their product, they'll operate there," said Kirk.Police pressure on the Lower Mainland may have played a part in the gang's decision to expand to Vancouver Island, said Sgt. Dave Bown, head of the Greater Victoria Regional Crime Unit

Columbus's reputation as a biker bar led many to assume the fire was gang related

The investigation into the Columbus Hotel fire is still in its earliest stage, but you can be sure police are well into considering the first thing that was on the mind of a lot of people Tuesday.
The Columbus's reputation as a biker bar led many to assume the fire was gang related -- with one gang striking at the other by torching one of the places some of its rivals were known to frequent.
It had been only two weeks since the last public violent encounter involving the local underworld took place, that being the downtown shootout allegedly between rival factions of the Independent Soldiers.
If people's assumptions are correct and the Columbus fire is the work of gang members, it escalates an already tense situation that has become increasingly and frighteningly public.
Two men, residents of the hotel said to be unconnected to any gang, are feared dead in the charred rubble where only three brick walls still stand.
If the Prince George Fire Department determines arson is the cause, the police investigation takes on a double-homicide element. Those intent on misspending their youth by succumbing to the allure of being a drugged-out minion, a gang footsoldier, might want to consider the grave consequences. They're damned if they do carry out their masters' wishes and damned if they don't.
Among those watching the scene in disbelief Tuesday were several youths with at least a passing familiarity with street life in Prince George. One rode his bicycle downtown to place a resume at the Centre for Learning Alternatives, directly across Second Avenue from the still-smouldering remains of the Columbus. He hadn't heard about the fire by Tuesday afternoon and couldn't believe what he saw.
"It's probably gangs," he said without prompting, getting back on his bike after finding the centre closed for the day because of the fire.
"I was going to meet a guy down here. We were both going to try for (job) placements. He used to be in a gang and I read that he got out.
"They should all do that," he said as he rode off, still clutching his resume.
The young man was close enough to street life to know how things work, but smart enough to know it's a dead end, sometimes literally.
Oh, for more like him.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Joseph McGuire who was shot by an off-duty police officer during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is still recovering from his injuries

A man who was shot by an off-duty police officer during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is still recovering from his injuries at Rapid City Regional Hospital, officials reported Sunday.
Joseph McGuire, 33, of Imperial Beach, Calif. who is a member of the notorious Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, was shot at about 1 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 9 at the Loud American Roadhouse, a bar in Sturgis. According to previous reports in the Seattle Times, he had suffered wounds to his stomach and his leg. His condition is improving, as McGuire has been moved from the intensive care unit to a different floor of the hospital.Ron Smith, 43, an off-duty Seattle police officer who is a member of the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club, an organization of law enforcement officers and firefighters who are also motorcycle enthusiasts, allegedly shot McGuire. According to previous reports, the shots were fired after an altercation started between Smith and several Hells Angels. McGuire has reported to the Seattle Times that he felt as though his life was in danger during the attack.While there has been some speculation that the reason for the fight between the Hells Angels and the Iron Pigs was because the officers refused to remove their motorcycle club “colors” or patches, authorities now think there could be more to the case. Less than a year ago Smith testified against members of the Hells Angels group, a testimony that sent at least four members of the gang to prison on racketeering and attempted murder charges. Authorities have not uncovered any evidence that suggests the Hells Angels altercation was related to Smith's testimony, but officials are not ruling it out as a possibility.Smith has not yet been charged in the shooting. After being detained for questioning Saturday night, he was allowed to return home to Seattle, where he and other officers who were present during the shooting have reportedly been relieved of duty while an investigation continues. A grand jury, which was originally assembled Sunday, Aug. 10, is scheduled to reconvene Aug. 27 at the Meade County Courthouse to hear testimony from witnesses in the bar, law enforcement investigating the case, and others.One of the issues to be discussed is whether Smith legally had a firearm with him while in the Loud American Roadhouse, a popular hangout during the Rally. While state law prohibits off-duty police officers from carrying firearms into an establishment that sells alcohol, a federal law entitled the “Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004” allows officers to carry firearms at all times, with few exceptions. The law does not allow officers to carry the weapons when they are intoxicated.

"Fab" gang fired shots at "Mash Mode" members Gang war at two Missouri City fast-food restaurants

Shots were fired, windows were broken and one person was injured in a gang fight at two Missouri City fast-food restaurants early Saturday.
Police believe the fight started at around 12:10 a.m. Saturday, when members of the "Fab" gang fired shots at "Mash Mode" members at a McDonald's at 1605 Cartwright Road.According to Missouri City Police Department reports, while officers were responding to a "shots fired" call, a dispatcher received a second call saying a window at the restaurant had been shot out. Also, a window was shot out in a car that had passengers inside.When officers arrived, several cars were leaving the area. Police found broken glass in the parking lot, and several .45-caliber and 9mm bullet casings on the ground, reports said.Witnesses at the scene said the shots were fired from a White Ford Explorer. Within minutes, another police officer spotted that vehicle at Murphy and Cartwright roads, and made a traffic stop.
Police Capt. John Bailey said the officer recognized the passenger as a known Fab gang member, and ordered the passenger and driver out of the vehicle. The officer then searched the vehicle and found two handguns under the passenger seat.
He then arrested the passenger, Patrick Morrison, 20, of Missouri City, and charged him with assault with a deadly weapon, unlawfully carrying a firearm and deadly conduct.Meanwhile, police had received a call that shots had been fired at a Denny's restaurant on State Highway 6.Minutes after the call, two other police officers who had responded to a call on an unrelated matter near the 6100 block of State Highway 6 were standing near the street, and turned upon hearing a noise.
Bailey said the two then saw a car driving at a high rate of speed, in reverse. The car slammed into a gas pump at a station at Murphy Road and Highway 6, knocking the pump over. Two men in the car jumped out, and ran into the waiting arms of the two patrolmen.Police determined that the two had been involved in the Denny's shooting, and they were arrested for deadly conduct.The two, Jefon Bogan, 18, and Taurean Riles, 19, both of Missouri City, were transported to Fort Bend County Jail in Richmond, as was Morrison.Bailey said someone was shot in the leg at McDonalds, but it was a graze wound and not serious.The gas pump had an automatic cut-off valve, and gasoline did not spill in that accident.

Delema Dixon, who also goes by the last name Lefthand, was shot in the head Saturday night when her home was riddled by gunfire

20-year-old Alberta woman was shot and killed over the weekend, the unintended victim of a vicious gang war that has claimed a number of lives at a collection of reserves south of Edmonton. Delema Dixon, who also goes by the last name Lefthand, was shot in the head Saturday night when her home was riddled by gunfire on the Samson reserve -- one of four First Nations in Hobbema, Alta. Dixon's mother, Vernadee Applegarth, told CTV News that she believed it was her son -- who is in a gang -- who was the target. It wasn't the first time that their home was shot up in the last few years. Applegarth is now left to take care of her daughter's 18-month-old child. "I'm angry so much that I want to get revenge," she said. Dixon's father, Darren Applejohn, likened living on the reserve to living in a warzone. "It's just like living in Iraq -- terrorist town -- that's how I see it. Bunch of terrorists here," he said. Gun complaints are nearly an everyday occurrence in the region -- one of the mostly heavily policed per capita in Canada. "These types of cowardly acts are hideous, and there are a lot of community members that are fed up with it," RCMP Cpl. Darrel Bruno said. Dixon's death -- the third murder on the reserves since a gun and weapons amnesty was announced only weeks ago -- sparked leaders to meet for emergency meetings on Monday. "People are saying, `What can we do to make it right?'" Roy Louis, an adviser with the Samson First Nation told The Canadian Press.
"It is up to us, the Four Nations people. We need to work together to come up with long-term solutions against the gangs, the drugs and the violence. But our community has to take charge." Leaders announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of anyone responsible for the murders on the reserves. There have been five murders already this year, in a community of 12,000. But Applejohn said that people are afraid to come forward to police, saying they are labelled as snitches or shot at themselves. One of the four First Nations has imposed a youth curfew. The Samson First Nation also approved the destruction of 26 known drug houses.
There are believed to be at least 13 gangs operating in the reserves, fighting for control over the drug trade, which mostly deals in crack cocaine.

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Crumlin-Drimnagh gangs four men arrested on Wednesday in connection with a seizure of heroin with a street value of about €1.2 million

Three of the four men arrested on Wednesday in connection with a seizure of heroin with a street value of about €1.2 million have been charged are appearing in court in Dublin this morning.The men were detained after a convoy of vehicles was stopped and searched as part of a planned Garda operation at 9pm on Kennelsfort Road, Palmerstown, in west Dublin. Local gardaí and members of a number of specialist Garda units stopped four vehicles and discovered six kilos of heroin.
Senior Garda sources told the Irish Times that the men were members of an organised gang based around Crumlin and Drimnagh that had been involved in a gun feud with another gang from the areas. One of the men is regarded by gardaí as the de facto leader of one of the country's most active drugs gangs. Wednesday's arrests were part of a continuing operation targeting the Crumlin-Drimnagh gangs and involved members of the Organised Crime Unit, Garda National Drugs Unit, National Bureau of Criminal Investigation and local gardaí.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Juan Montes Jr., body was found at a San Luis Rey Park was among those named in an injunction issued against members of his San Clemente gang

A man whose body was found at a San Luis Rey Park was among those named in an injunction issued against documented members of his San Clemente gang and their San Juan Capistrano rivals, authorities said today. The victim, whose bloodied body was found near some tennis courts about 6:15 a.m. Wednesday, was identified as Juan Montes Jr., 26, of Capistrano Beach, said Jim Amormino of the Orange County Sheriff's Department. Farrah Emami of the District Attorney's Office confirmed that Montes was among those named in the injunction approved by a judge last January as an enforcement tool against the dueling South Orange County gangs.
Amormino said the slaying is under investigation, with no progress in the case to report. An autopsy was performed, Amormino said. Investigators know the cause of death, but at this point will only say that Montes suffered traumatic upper body injuries consistent with foul play. A screwdriver was recovered in the park and taken for testing as possible evidence, but whether it is linked to the slaying has not been determined, Amormino said, noting that forensic testing is not immediate.
The park where the body was found is next to some apartments, a golf course and a playground. Amormino said crime in the area is rare. The man appeared to have been killed at the scene, Amormino said. The gang injunction that was signed Jan. 25 by Orange County Superior Court Judge Daniel Didier named 94 San Clemente and 132 San Juan Capistrano active gang participants.
It restricts or prohibits documented gang members from participating in such acts as congregating in public with others named in the injunction and using alcohol in public.

George Christie Jr. has pleaded guilty to possession of drugs, which were found during a sheriff's gang unit search of his Ventura home gym

Former Hells Angels leader George Christie Jr. has pleaded guilty to possession of drugs, which were found during a sheriff's gang unit search of his Ventura home gym.
Christie pleaded guilty this week to felony possession of drugs and misdemeanor being under the influence. Less than two grams of cocaine and methamphetamine were found during the April search of his home. Christie teaches martial arts in his home gym and he says it's possible the drugs were left by someone. The 61-year-old Christie will be sentenced next month to a drug diversion program.

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Armed police used a blowtorch to gain entry to Satan's Slaves headquarters during a dawn raid, seizing property

Armed police used a blowtorch to gain entry to a motorbike gang's headquarters during a dawn raid, seizing property to help pay for more than $100,000 in outstanding court fines.
Twelve police, including four who were armed, helped district court staff gain entry to the Satan's Slaves headquarters in Luxford St, Wellington, yesterday, impounding a Ford Explorer, a Harley-Davidson motorbike and $2000 worth of electronic goods owned by two gang members.One owed about $18,000 in fines and the other $84,000.Detective Sergeant Martin Todd said that, though the pair did not answer the door, police knew they were inside so used a blowtorch to get past the strengthened door."We had to use force and began using a blowtorch but, once one hinge had been blasted off, they decided to open the door.
"You will have to pay your fines even if you are a gang hiding behind fortified doors. It has caught up with them - items have been seized which they treasure."
District court staff asked for police help during the raid because the gang members were judged to be a risk.

Rodrigo Requejo is charged with felony counts of gang-related assault and battery and one count of street terrorism

Rodrigo Requejo, 34, of Westminster, is charged with felony counts of gang-related assault and battery and one count of street terrorism for joining at least two other men in a fight inside Blackie’s By The Sea, a bar off the Newport Pier frequented by old-school surfers.Requejo, along with John Lloyd, 41, and Brian Heslington, 35, both of Costa Mesa, is accused of being part of the Hells Angels biker gang and fighting with members of the Set Free Soldiers, a rival group of bikers that claims to be a Christian ministry.Heslington is accused of possessing cocaine, Ecstasy pills and a loaded gun.At about 1 p.m. July 27, several members of the Set Free Soldiers, including leader Phillip Aguilar, walked into Blackie’s displaying their “gang colors” and waited near the back, prosecutors said. Requejo, Lloyd and Heslington came soon after and the two rival groups began arguing, then punches were thrown and two people were stabbed, police said. Five Set Free Soldiers and two Hells Angels have been charged so far.Requejo is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Luis "Maldito" Mendoza and Lorenzo Arias guilty in what has become known as the Dead Presidents case

jury ordered the death penalty for two gang members guilty of one of the largest gang killings in San Bernardino County's history.In July, the jury had found Luis "Maldito" Mendoza and Lorenzo Arias guilty in what has become known as the Dead Presidents case. They are set to be sentenced Sept. 10.The case involved a July 9, 2000, shooting at a West Side duplex in which four gang members died. Among them were Johnny and Gilbert Agudo, brothers and presidents of different West Side street gangs. Also killed were half brothers Marselino and Anthony Luna.
Prosecutors alleged that Mendoza and Arias, both members of the 7th Street Locos who had grown up with the Agudos, were carrying out an order by members of the Mexican Mafia prison gang.The case was widely seen as an example of how Mexican Mafia influence has forced some Latino street gangs to turn on their own members

Four men reportedly stormed the De Rocco ice-cream parlour in Rüsselsheim south-west of Frankfurt yesterday evening and shot three people dead

Four men reportedly stormed the De Rocco ice-cream parlour in Rüsselsheim south-west of Frankfurt yesterday evening and shot three people dead before fleeing down a pedestrian street.Two Turkish citizens, aged 49 and 28, were arrested today following a manhunt involving more than 200 police with helicopters and sniffer dogs. Police were continuing their search. One of the victims was a 55-year old Greek woman identified as Anna K, who ran a Greek restaurant next to the ice-cream parlour. She was caught in the crossfire after leaving the cafe as the dispute escalated, and died from internal bleeding in the arms of her husband at the scene.
The two other victims were men of Turkish origin aged 26 and 29. The first was described by police as being one of the attackers. His 21-year-old brother was also seriously injured and under police protection in hospital last night. The second dead man was said to have been sitting at the table when the men opened fire.
The attack has raised fears that provincial Germany is becoming a battleground for gang warfare after an incident almost exactly a year ago in which six Italians were gunned down at an Italian-run pizzeria in Duisburg, north-west of Frankfurt. It was quickly established that the Calabrian mafia, known as the 'Ndrangheta, was responsible for that shootout and had taken advantage of the relative obscurity of provincial Germany to continue a decades-old feud. The killings were the first time a mafia syndicate had carried out a revenge attack on foreign soil.
Today police refused to rule out a mafia or organised crime connection in the Rüsselsheim killings, but said the Turkish origin of the victims and attackers in the latest incident suggested the attacks were not linked.
"We don't know why the attack took place in the ice cream parlour," Roland Desch of Hessen police said.The brutality of the killings has shocked Germany and raised concerns that it is becoming a hub for underground economic crime.
"This is a very complex case," said Stefan Müller of the state of Hesse crime squad. He added that the killings, which involved knives as well as two guns, could have been "honour killings" which either had to do with a dispute between two parties, or were sparked by rivalries between two gangs.
The police said there was evidence that a motive for the attack may have been unpaid gambling winnings and be linked to another gambling dispute three years ago. At least two of the men involved in the incident were caught up in a dispute involving knives at a Turkish community centre in Rüsselsheim last Saturday to which the police were called.

William (Billy) Bowden pleaded guilty in a Winnipeg courtroom today to carrying a firearm in a careless manner in January 2007

William (Billy) Bowden, 33, pleaded guilty in a Winnipeg courtroom today to carrying a firearm in a careless manner in January 2007 and skipping out on his preliminary hearing about a year later. Other drug and weapons charges related to the 2007 incident were stayed as part of a plea bargain securing the two convictions.
Bowden remains in custody though, charged with manslaughter in relation to the November 2007 killing of Jeff Engen, who was fatally stabbed at the Empire Cabaret, prompting the club to close. That charge remains before the courts.
Bowden has been in custody since he was arrested Feb. 14 in Whistler, B.C., and returned to Manitoba. The Crown and defence jointly recommended that time be noted in his sentence for carrying the firearm. That crime occurred around 2:30 a.m. on Jan. 20, 2007, as Bowden was leaving the NV lounge in a truck with friend Ken Houston, court heard. Police discovered a Glock 9mm handgun loaded with 18 bullets in a pile of garbage close to where they arrested Bowden and Houston in a back lane off Corydon Avenue. Bowden admitted today to having carried the gun, which his lawyer Sheldon Pinx told court was "for his own protection." Bowden had also been charged with ecstasy possession and other weapons offences in relation to the same arrest, but those five charges were stayed. Pinx told court the plea bargain was partly a result of "exigencies with evidenciary issues" related to the case and a potential Charter challenge related to the way Bowden was arrested that night.
Bowden, once a full-patch member of the local Hells Angels chapter, was apparently asked to leave the gang last year, according to a source

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

The teenager, whose name was not been released this morning, was riding his bike

The teenager, whose name was not been released this morning, was riding his bike in the 1100 block of West 109th Street at 8:50 p.m. when a dark compact car pulled up and two young men armed with a handgun shot him, said Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy Ed Hernandez.The teen was struck in the lower torso and died at the scene, Hernandez said.The two young men, described by investigators as "gang-type" youths, fled east, Hernandez said. The weapon used in the shooting had not been recovered this morning, no arrests had been made and no suspect descriptions were available, Hernandez said.On Sunday night, four men were shot at the corner of Imperial Highway and Western Avenue in Athens, about a mile away from the Westmont shooting. Two of the men died at the scene and the third at a local hospital, Hernandez said.

El Monte Bobby Perez and Jonathan Carrion were convicted by a Pomona Superior Court jury on Friday of two counts each of attempted premeditated murder

Bobby Perez, 22, of Hacienda Heights, and Jonathan Carrion, 21, of Baldwin Park, were convicted by a Pomona Superior Court jury on Friday of two counts each of attempted premeditated murder with special gang and hate crime allegations, El Monte police Detective Ralph Batres said.Two reputed gang members are facing multiple life sentences for the attempted murders of two black victims based on their race, officials said Friday.The verdicts stem from a June 16, 2007, incident in which Perez and Carrion - members of the El Monte Flores gang - joined six to seven other fellow gang members and assaulted four mentally handicapped clients of the Bridges facility on Elliott Avenue in El Monte, Batres said.
The clients were coming back from a nearby Pizza Hut when they were attacked. Two of the unidentified victims, who were black, were stabbed in the back. A third Hispanic victim was kicked and a fourth Caucasian victim was also beat, Batres said.Witnesses told police the group of men were yelling out the El Monte Flores gang name and racial slurs during the attack.The victims identified Perez and Carrion as the suspects who stabbed the two black victims, Batres said.All of the victims eventually recovered from their injuries, he said.In addition to the attempted murder verdicts, Carrion and Perez were also convicted on one count each of assault with a deadly weapon with special gang and hate crime allegations, and one count each offelony battery also with special gang and hate crime allegations, Batres said.They face multiple life terms when they are sentenced on Aug. 21.

Gypsy Jokers Motorcycle Club has spent four years fighting an order by the police for the fortification to be removed

Gypsy Jokers Motorcycle Club has spent four years fighting an order by the police for the fortification to be removed. Today Justice Peter Blaxell ruled that the Police Commissioner had a reasonable belief that the security measures were excessive and that some members of the gang were involved in organised crime.
The gang has seven days to remove the fortification, although Justice Blaxell urged police to extend the deadline.Outside the court Detective Inspector Charlie Carver from the Gang Crime Squad said the final decision is up to the Commissioner.
"The commissioner has the right to extend that time," he said."Obviously if seven days is not sufficient then the commissioner can look at an application to him and can look at an extension if he sees fit."

San Diego chapter president and vice president were arrested at one of the homes in Pacific Beach, Calif.

33-year-old biker and the chapter treasurer were arrested at one of the homes in Pacific Beach, Calif. Police seized a pound and a half of marijuana, in addition to hydrocodone and oxycodone pills, and $5,000 in cash, Reizen said.
The San Diego chapter president and vice president also were charged in a separate case in the investigation, Reizen said."It was a limited investigation based on a very specific set of facts," Reizen said Tuesday.
The defendant, who was released on bond, was scheduled for a pre-trial hearing Aug 20 in San Diego County Superior Court, with his trial set for September.
He is charged with possession of marijuana for sale and two counts of illegal possession of narcotics.His trial could be delayed, given the defendant's involvement in the shooting last Saturday at the Sturgis rally in South Dakota.
He was shot about 1 a.m. Saturday at the Loud American Roadhouse after a fight broke out between Hells Angels' members and an off-duty Seattle police officer. The biker was in stable condition at a local hospital.The officer, a 43-year-old detective, says he was jumped and beaten and drew his weapon in self-defense. The detective was at the bar with four other officers who were vacationing at the weeklong rally. All five officers belonged to the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club, which draws members mainly from police and firefighters.Some sources say the fight may have started because the officers wore their club's colors into the bar, which angered the Hells Angels members.A Meade County grand jury in South Dakota began hearing testimony Sunday from witnesses, including the officers, during a seven-hour hearing. The grand jury is expected to reconvene on Aug. 27, state's attorney Jesse Sondreal said. No one has been arrested.The Seattle Police Department reassigned all five officers while the investigation is pending, police officials said.Court records say the biker has previous convictions for burglary in 2000 and possession of a dangerous weapon in 2001. In both cases, he was sentenced to two years of confinement, although it was unclear Tuesday whether he served the full terms.The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's computer system was down Tuesday, so the inmate's prison records were unavailable, a department spokeswoman said.
The biker is not under any court-imposed conditions while his case is pending, other than that he is required in California to consent to searches while on pretrial release, Reizen said.If convicted of the drug charges, he could face a maximum of six years in prison because of his criminal record, Reizen said.

Monday, 11 August 2008

Several Jamaicans are said to be among 300 suspected members of street gangs arrested in Florida in the US.

Several Jamaicans are said to be among 300 suspected members of street gangs arrested in Florida in the US.Federal immigration agents Thursday announced that they had arrested 321 persons many of whom are immigrants.According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, those arrested operated from Lake Worth to Miami and were associated with various gangs.Some of those arrested are from the United States, but most are from Jamaica and other countries including Cuba, Haiti, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Colombia and Chile.
The sweep included one man who was deported for criminal activity, but returned to the US.Federal agents did not release the names of those arrested, but said they are being held in various jails or out on bail.The suspects are charged with various racketeering, gun, drug and parole violations.

Ruben Castro "made a big mistake" when he entered pleas last month to racketeering and conspiracy to sell cocaine.

Ruben Castro told a Los Angeles federal judge on Friday that he "made a big mistake" when he entered pleas last month to racketeering and conspiracy to sell cocaine.
The 48-year-old was supposed to be sentenced Friday and could have received 27 years in prison but that hearing was canceled. Arguments on his plea change will be heard in October. Prosecutors say he ran two branches of a drug-dealing Los Angeles street gang from behind bars while serving a life sentence in Colorado for a 1997 racketeering conviction.

Jose Olvera,Jimmy Salinas, and Eduardo Morales arrested

Jose Olvera, 25-year-old Jose Madero, 31-year-old Jimmy Salinas, and Eduardo Morales. Police say Morales was originally dropped off at Christus Spohn Memorial with injuries just moments after the shooting. "All of these individuals were talking about have been arrested and I know three of them have been convicted multiple times of offenses," added Smith.As the details surface, we're beginning to learn more about the suspects involved. For instance, for Jose Madero, this is not the first time he's faced a murder charge. He's was already convicted of murder in 2003. Five years later he was back on the street.
We've also learned 3 of the suspects are documented members of the prison gang known as the Mexican Mafia. While a motive for the shooting is not being released at this time, Smith says it was not a case of gang on gang crime. "We don't believe Danny Villarreal was a part of a rival gang or this was some dispute between two different gangs."If convicted the men could face anywhere between five years to life in prison. The death penalty is not an option. "On behalf of Carlos Valdez and District Attorney's Office, we pledge to do everything we can to seek justice for the victims in this case and for the community," said Nueces County Assistant District Attorney Mark Skurka.Bond has been set at $1 million for each of the suspects, and police promise more arrests could come in the coming days.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Loud American Roadhouse scene of a confrontation between members of the Hells Angels and the Iron Pigs,motorcycle club

off-duty Seattle police officer was detained Saturday after shooting a member of the Hells Angels motorcycle club during a bar brawl at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota, police said.The officer, who was not identified, was involved in an early-morning fracas Saturday at the Loud American Roadhouse, according to a statement from Sturgis police.The confrontation erupted about 1 a.m. between members of the Hells Angels and the Iron Pigs, a motorcycle club made up of police and firefighters. There were about 500 people in the bar at the time and a rock band was playing, according to the Rapid City Journal.Two gunshots were fired, and the shooter was identified by Sturgis police as a law-enforcement officer.There was no word on the condition of the victim, who was hospitalized.The Seattle Police Department was notified Saturday morning, according to a statement issued in the evening by Seattle police spokesman Sean Whitcomb.The statement said that four other Seattle officers were also present when the Sturgis shooting occurred.Whitcomb declined to name the officers.All five officers involved were placed on administrative reassignment and relieved of duty pending the investigation by South Dakota authorities, Whitcomb said.Sturgis Police Chief Jim Bush told the Rapid City Journal that police detained and questioned numerous people at the scene but that no arrests had been made and nobody was in custody."We're still trying to ascertain for sure who did the shooting," Bush told the newspaper. "We have suspects. We have a lot of information to put together."Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske has dispatched a team of homicide and internal-affairs investigators to Sturgis to gather information, Whitcomb said.

"The Seattle Police Department considers this a matter of utmost seriousness," the Seattle police statement said.

Sturgis police said in their statement they will investigate the shooting, aided by federal, state and county law enforcement, and the results will be presented to an investigative grand jury.

The famous Sturgis rally draws hundreds of thousands of motorcycle riders to the small South Dakota town every summer. This year's rally ends today.

Friday, 8 August 2008

Chad Barroby was one of some 20 bikers charged after police raided clubhouses in Vancouver and Kelowna in a 2005 operation known as E-Pandora

alleged Hells Angels associate won't get any jail time after pleading guilty to trafficking cocaine.30 year old Chad Barroby was one of some 20 bikers charged after police raided clubhouses in Vancouver and Kelowna in a 2005 operation known as E-Pandora.He was charged with trafficking cocaine, conspiracy to produce and traffic meth and committing an offense in association with a criminal organization.
Barroby pleaded guilty to the cocaine trafficking charge only, and charges linking him to the Hells ngels have been stayed.He's been sentenced to an 18 month conditional sentence and a 10 year firearms ban.

Jessica Andrea Gordon pleaded not guilty in Marin County Superior Court Wednesday to being an accessory to the murder

Jessica Andrea Gordon pleaded not guilty in Marin County Superior Court Wednesday to being an accessory to the murder, shooting from an occupied vehicle, permitting a shooting from an occupied vehicle, possession of ecstasy for sale and possession of cocaine, Marin County Deputy District Attorney Linda Witong said. Gordon is free on bail. Her co-defendant, Joseph Andrew Farnsworth, 20, of El Cerrito, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of William Crompton Maclean, 25, of San Leandro, and is being held in county jail in lieu of $2 million bail. His preliminary hearing date will be set Aug. 28. The Marin County Sheriff's Office said Farnsworth and Gordon were riding in a Dodge Durango on northbound U.S. Highway 101 around 8:15 p.m. May 24, the night of the shooting. Farnsworth, a passenger in the back seat of the Dodge, is suspected of shooting Maclean as he rode by in a Chevrolet pickup that was leading a group of Hells Angels on motorcycles who were returning from a funeral service in Daly City.
Raymond Foakes, Maclean's brother-in-law and president of the Sonoma County Chapter of the Hells Angels, pulled the Chevrolet off the highway at Paradise Drive and called the California Highway Patrol for help. Maclean was taken to Marin General Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
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