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Alleged Rebels drug ring smashed by police in raids

ABOVE AND RIGHT: Drugs, cash and guns, including a sawn-off shotgun were seized after NSW and Queensland police raided a house in Bangalow.
ABOVE AND RIGHT: Drugs, cash and guns, including a sawn-off shotgun were seized after NSW and Queensland police raided a house in Bangalow. Doug Eaton

UPDATE 9am: FIVE people have been arrested in both QLD and NSW as part of a cross-border police operation targeting the criminal activities of the Rebels outlaw motorcycle gang.

Yesterday, police from the Richmond Local Area Command and Strike Force Raptor executed a search warrant at a house on Palm Tree Crescent, Bangalow, while officers from Taskforce Maxima executed six search warrants in Southern Queensland.

The warrant at Bangalow is still underway; however, so far police have allegedly located two rifles, a shotgun, methamphetamine, cannabis, cocaine, steroids and cash.

A 31-year-old man was arrested and charged with: Trafficking in dangerous drugs; Participant in criminal organisation being knowingly present in public; Publishing or possessing instructions for producing dangerous drugs; Receiving/possessing property obtained from trafficking or supply of dangerous drugs; Possessing dangerous drugs; Possess by night instrument of house breaking; Possess property suspected of having been acquired for the purpose of committing a drug offence; Unlawful possession weapons; 5 counts of disqualified driving; and drug driving.

A 24-year-old woman was arrested and charged with: Possess dangerous drugs; Possess drug utensil; and possess item used in commission of crime.

A 27-year-old man was arrested and charged with: Participant in criminal organisation being knowingly present in public; Two counts of dangerous drugs; Possess utensils; Possess anything used in the commission of a crime; and possess tainted property.

A 31-year-old man was arrested and charged with: Receiving/possessing property obtained from trafficking or supply of dangerous drugs.

A 21-year-old woman was charged with: Possession of dangerous drug; Possession of utensil; and fail to appear.

A 33-year-old man was issued a field court attendance notice for allegedly hindering police at the Bangalow search warrant.

At this stage court details are not available.

The Crime Manager of the Richmond Local Area Command, Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay, said his officers were working closely with their Queensland counterparts, and specialist police from Strike Force Raptor, to tackle outlaw motorcycle gang activity in northern NSW and south-east Queensland.

"If you're involved with outlaw motor cycle gangs, you can be absolutely sure that we're keeping a close watch on you," Det Insp Lindsay said.

"As has been the case for many years now, we regularly and proactively gather intelligence on the bikie chapters located here in northern NSW.

"Whenever we catch them breaking the law, whether it's through running a red light or through manufacturing drugs, you can rest assured we will arrest and charge them.

"We work closely with our colleagues over the border in Queensland, and regularly share intelligence and resources to tackle those criminals who attempt to conduct their illegal activities across state boundaries.

"It doesn't where these bikie members live or how they operate, if they break the law, they can expect to be arrested by police."

Investigations are continuing and it is expected further charges will be laid.

 

UPDATE 6am Thursday: POLICE have smashed an alleged Rebels bikie drug ring after seizing guns, drugs and cash and uncovering what they believe was a clandestine drug lab during a raid at a Bangalow home yesterday morning.

The 31-year-old alleged treasurer of the Rebels Ballina chapter was arrested after officers seized amphetamines worth an estimated $14,000 with police declaring that the raid has shut down the bikies' cross-border drug trafficking operation.

Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay of Lismore police said the raid by officers attached to Strike Force Belongil was a joint operation with Queensland Police's Taskforce Maxima, which conducted seven raids on the Gold Coast and at Goodna yesterday.

He said the raids followed an extensive joint-agency investigation with Queensland Police into outlaw motorcycle gang (OMCG) activity that began last November.

"We will allege three members of the Rebels OMCG Ballina chapter were arrested today, some of those members were arrested and charged in Queensland, others in NSW," Insp Lindsay said.

"Police will allege there were drugs manufactured and purchased within NSW and then transported to Queensland for distribution.

"There were items there that we believe were part of the manufacturing of amphetamines. We are flying up specialist chemists and police from Sydney to examine that."

Two rifles were seized in the Bangalow raid, as well as a sawn-off shotgun, 19 cannabis plants and cash.

Detective Inspector Brendan Smith of Taskforce Maxima said police arrested five alleged Rebels and associates in the Queensland raids and laid 21 charges.

"In the early hours of this morning we will allege the treasurer of the Ballina Rebels was arrested and found with drugs in his vehicle on his way to make sales in Queensland," he said.

"They (bikies) think that they are protected by operating in NSW but hopefully the message will sink in now that police work together and no matter where they are we will track them down."

 

UPDATE 1:30pm:  POLICE smashed an alleged Rebels Outlaw Motorcycle Gang drug ring when they seized guns, cash, cannabis and found what they believe to be a clandestine drug lab at a Bangalow home this morning.

Crime Manager Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay of Lismore police said NSW police attached to strike force Belongil and officers from the Queensland police force's taskforce Maxima conducted eight raids at residential addresses at Bangalow and the Gold Coast this morning seizing drugs, guns, cash and weapons.

Insp Lindsay said specialist police from Sydney were flying to Ballina to examine the suspected clandestine laboratory.

Police allege members of the Rebels Ballina chapter and associates of the gang were trafficking drugs from NSW over the border into Queensland where they were being sold to buyers on the Gold Coast.

 

UPDATE 11:25am: A PATCHED member of the Rebels motorcycle gang from Ballina is among those arrested as part of cross-border drug trafficking blitz by NSW and Queensland Police.

Police arrested a 31-year-old Bangalow man in New South Wales after allegedly seizing a quantity of amphetamines valued at $14,000, QLD police said in a statement.

It is alleged the man is a patched member of the Rebels Criminal Motorcycle gang and Vice President of the Ballina chapter.

He was charged with being a participant in a criminal organisation and being knowingly present in a public place, two counts of drug trafficking with circumstance of aggravation (VLAD Act), one count each of possessing dangerous drugs with circumstance of aggravation (VLAD Act), possessing instructions for producing dangerous drugs, possessing house breaking tools and driving under the influence of drugs and five counts of disqualified driving.

A 19-year-old man from Carrara, was arrested and charged with being a participant in a criminal organisation and being knowingly present in a public place. It will be alleged this person is a participant of the Rebels Criminal Motorcycle Gang.

The alleged offenders are due to face Southport Magistrates Court later today.

 

ORIGINAL REPORT 11am Wednesday: A CROSS-BORDER police operation targeting the criminal activities of the Rebels outlaw motorcycle gang has resulted in a number of raids and arrests in the region today.

Last November, detectives from Ballina Police Station commenced an investigation into an alleged drug supply operation involving members of the Rebels' Ballina Chapter, police said.

They said their investigation led them to believe that members and associates of the bikie gang were trafficking drugs from NSW over the border and sold on the Gold Coast.

Together with officers from QLD Police Force's Taskforce Maxima, Ballina Detectives began to closely examine the gang's activities on the Gold Coast.

Today, police executed a number of search warrants in NSW and Queensland, resulting in a number of arrests and the seizure of illicit drugs, firearms and weapons.

Further details on the results of the warrants will be provided later today.
 

Topics:  arrests crime drugs firearms police raids rebels bikie gang



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