Alcohol, drugs fuel Casino crime gang
By HELEN JACK email@example.com CASINO is under siege by a mob of up to 60 youths. As young as 10 years old, the youths start gathering at 10pm, fuelling their anti-social behaviour with drugs and alcohol.
Assaults, resulting in broken legs and arms, sexual attacks and malicious damage are just some of the offences police have recorded.
Richmond Local Area Command superintendent Bruce Lyons said the anti-social behaviour had escalated during the past six weeks.
“There are some visitors to the town who are part of the problem,” he said.
“And with alcohol being consumed and groups of people hanging, it results in crime and violence.
“I am concerned that people are unable to walk the streets in safety late at night.
“We are speaking with Richmond Valley Council to formulate a plan to curb the behaviour.”
Richmond Valley mayor Charlie Cox said he was saddened by the situation.
“I call on the families of these young people to take charge of their children and get them off the streets,” he said.
Cr Cox said council and police were working on a program to solve the situation but were not yet ready to reveal their strategy.
Supt Lyons said the group was gathering between the hours of 10pm and 3am.
“Arrests have been made in connection to the crimes and investigations by police are continuing,” he said.
Casino businessman Hilton Fatt said a zero-tolerance stance needed to be taken by police and the community to stop the behaviour.
“Let police enforce the laws that are there,” he said. “If police have to round them up and put them in the lock-up overnight and their parents collect them the next morning, so be it. This is not unique to Casino, it’s happening all around the country.
“Things quiet down for a while then something triggers the behaviour and it starts again.”