Tuesday, November 12, 2013


November 9, 2013

US law enforcement is providing intelligence reports to Australian authorities as they crackdown on Mongols and other motorcycle gangs in Australia.

The US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) last week hosted South Australian police, taking them to a Mongols event in Palm Springs, California.

Australian authorities have also been briefed by US prosecutors and ATF undercover agents who have infiltrated US gangs in the battle against motorcycle gangs.

'We are in pretty much daily contact with those guys about the intel we are hearing here,' John Ciccone, a 24-year veteran ATF special agent based in Los Angeles who has led major covert operations against bikie and street gangs, told AAP on Thursday.

'We are trying to do what we can.'

There has been speculation the Mongols' leadership in the US will be calling the shots for its Australian affiliate and will travel to Australia, but Ciccone believes this will not be the case.

He said Australia will likely elect their own officers to run the Australian organisation, but they will adhere to Mongol protocol that has been established in the US.

While tough new laws in Australia targeting outlaw motorcycle clubs have been criticised by bikies and civil libertarians, from what Ciccone has been told by Australian law enforcement he is envious of the powers they will have in Australia.

'I think they are outstanding,' Ciccone said.

The ATF and other US law enforcement agencies have had recent success in taking down the Mongols and other clubs.

Operation Black Rain in 2008, where four ATF agents infiltrated the Mongols, led to a racketeering indictment which resulted in 78 of the 79 Mongols members pleading guilty.

Ciccone said the Mongols are a criminal organisation, but in southern California after Black Rain the gang has made steps to weed out members who violate their protocols.

'It also appears they are trying to co-exist with other rival gangs that they have had violent confrontations with previously,' Ciccone said.

He would not be surprised if the Mongols in Australia, whose membership was boosted after Finks members patched-over, clashed with long-time rival the Hells Angels.

'In Australia, the tensions will still be there due to the fact there will always be tensions between the Mongols and Hells Angels,' he said.

'Now the Mongols have equivalent numbers with the Hells Angels they may expand into different areas.

'If they move into known Hells Angels areas, that could result in future violent confrontations between both organizations.'

Read more: http://www.skynews.com.au/world/article.aspx?id=922688

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