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Police warn victims of bikie gangs not to press charges

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Hells Angels MC

BY: Josh Robertson

Australia - POLICE are encouraging victims of bikie crimes to walk away because perpetrators might exact revenge if taken to court.

The Courier-Mail has uncovered cases of Queenslanders innocently caught in the web of outlaw motorcycle gangs being advised not to lodge complaints.

A cancer sufferer who had an outboard motor stolen was told by a detective to "forget it" because the suspect was a violent bikie.

Victims reporting assault, theft and death threats were all warned of reprisals if they pressed for charges to be laid.

A Brisbane locksmith who was first warned off pursuing complaints of death threats from competitors because of their Hells Angels links was asked by an officer: "Can you lay bricks? Because it might be time to get a new job".

The Courier-Mail is aware of another case involving a violent assault by a man who Gold Coast police later identified as a bikie gang associate.

The cases highlight the police service's own concerns about its ability to contain bikie violence and intimidation

But victims said police caution risked sending the community a message that bikies were afforded a certain level of impunity because of their fearsome criminal connections.

Former social worker Tony Davis, 52, who has incurable bone marrow cancer that has left him blind in one eye, reported his Mercury outboard motor stolen from his Edens Landing home on September 12 last year.

A Loganholme-based detective called two months later to say the suspected thief was "a violent character who has an 'M.O.' for this sort of thing," Mr Davis said. "She said he belonged to an outlaw motorcycle club and that I should forget it, don't worry about it, go buy another one."

Mr Davis said the terminal nature of his disease meant he had nothing to fear pursuing a complaint against a known bikie with a criminal record but police subsequently appeared reluctant to follow through.

He said the detective was now an instructor and he was concerned to think that "this is the way police cadets are being told to deal with complaints against bikies".

The Office of Fair Trading is investigating how the identity of the locksmith came to be leaked after he complained about a rival business owned by Hells Angels associates, who subsequently allegedly threatened to slit his throat.

The probe follows a string of phone calls to the locksmith after The Courier-Mail reported the alleged threats by Millennium Locks owners Bruno and Nuno Da Silva.

The man went to police on Sunday and said that was when the suggestion was made that he should find a new job.

Several of the calls came from Millennium's East Brisbane numbers, as well as from an unknown man who asked the locksmith to open his Morningside home.

The Courier-Mail contacted that caller but then, 16 minutes later, received a call from Bruno Da Silva. Mr Da Silva, who described the locksmith business as "a thug's game", said the Office of Fair Trading had told him the rival locksmith's name in a phone call.

He denied threatening the man, saying he was jealous of Millennium's success. Mr Da Silva, a confessed former Hells Angels prospect, refused to discuss his relationship with the world's most notorious bikie gang.

Queensland police did not comment yesterday.


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Posted on 12/19/2012 11:42 AM | 1%er News

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