Underbelly spills to real life

AS FILMING for the latest instalment of the cult crime series Underbelly begins, real life underworld drama has escalated on the streets of Sydney.

Underbelly - Badness is based on the life of the recently jailed Anthony Perish and the team of officers from Strike Force Tuno who dedicated more than a decade of their service to bringing him down.

Production of the series has coincided with the formation of numerous strike forces targeting a strengthened organised crime network and the re-emergence of faces from Sydney's underworld past.

Even King's Cross club icon John Ibrahim, whose life formed the script for Underbelly - The Golden Mile, has found himself back in the spotlight.

On Tuesday fire tore through a hotel believed to be partly owned by Ibrahim.

A sledge hammer and two gas bottles were found at the Parramatta Rd scene.

Ibrahim's brother Fadi has been receiving his own publicity in the Sydney District Court where he and brother Michael Ibrahim and Rodney "Goldie" Atkinson are accused of conspiring to murder John Macris.

It is alleged the three may have had a vendetta against the man they believed to be responsible for the near fatal shooting of Fadi in June 2009.

The trial continues.

Meanwhile, senior police officers believe the dozens of shootings reported in Sydney this year have stemmed from an ongoing conflict between members of the Hells Angels and Nomads motorcycle gangs.

Bikie feuds have not only been at the centre of reckless violence in Sydney, but also in parts of Queensland and most recently, South Australia.

On Wednesday an alleged Hells Angels member was in a serious condition in an Adelaide hospital after being shot in the chest and arm.

The 29-year-old drove himself to the emergency department.

Police believe the shooting may be the result of conflict in club ranks.

Detective Superintendent John De Candia, Officer-in-Charge of the Crime Gangs Task Force, issued a warning to those aspiring to gang greatness.

"Anyone considering becoming an associate or a member of a bikie gang should take a good look at this incident," Supt De Candia said.

"This is not something you want to get involved in.

"As certain as death and taxes, those who are involved in outlaw motorcycle gangs risk a life of violence and continual police attention."

In Sydney's west, detectives attached to Strike Force Kinnarra are still investigating five shootings which took place within a few hours early on Tuesday morning.

Bullets were fired at homes and businesses around the suburbs but no one was injured.
Anyone with information can phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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