Gang squad bosses deny growing bikie problem in NSW
GANG Squad chiefs in NSW have once again rejected claims of a growing bikie problem on the North Coast following a tense week in parliament ranks.
Battle lines were drawn earlier this week when shadow police minister, Walt Secord, compared the attitude of North Coast National MPs to that of an Iraqi Propaganda Minister who once "denied American troops were invading Baghdad even as they advanced into his own palace".
Noting the increased presence of bikes with Queensland numberplates on North Coast roads, the firebombing of the Nomad's clubhouse at Byron Bay, and a Hells Angel's fun run between Woodenbong to Murwillumbah, which the ABC reported was a fundraiser for the pending High Court challenge in Queensland, Mr Secord questioned how much more evidence Tweed MP Geoff Provest needed.
He told the NSW Upper House "the first step to solving a problem is admitting there is one" and called on the State Government to step in.
A spokesperson for NSW Police Minister Police Minister Mike Gallacher said it was "outrageous" for Mr Secord, a former Chief of Staff of the previous Labor Government, to even comment on police issues "since Labor failed to do anything for 16 years".
Asked to confirm whether the gang squad had evidence of increased bikie activity in the region, a spokesperson for NSW police said as they had outlined before, "there is no growing outlaw motorcycle gang problem in northern NSW.
"Of course, there are OMCG chapters in northern NSW. However, they have been present in the area for a number of years and are by no means recent arrivals," the spokesperson said
"The Gangs Squad regularly works with local police to combat OMCG activity in all parts of NSW.
"These operations will continue to take place on a regular basis." Comment was sought from Mr Provest and North Coast Minister Don Page.