Police give criminals early wake-up call

Police give criminals early wake-up call

National News

Police in Tasman District have today coordinated a major operation aimed at halting the activities of the puppet gang for the Hells Angels, the Red Devils.

The operation has involved in excess of 120 police staff from around New Zealand, many of whom were flown to Nelson early today by the NZ Defence Force. It has focused on arrests and seizures of drugs, weapons, cash and other property.

Today's operation kicked off with a Police bulldozer demolishing the front entrance to the Red Devils' pad in Natalie St, Nelson. Search warrants were simultaneously executed at private addresses in Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough.

Tasman Police District Commander, Superintendent Gary Knowles said the operation had produced significant evidence to support the Police stance over the past two years that the gang's primary focus was organised crime. The evidence also confirmed the gang's relationship with the Hells Angels.

"We never thought for a moment these were just good old boys on motorbikes, despite what their supporters and legal representatives tried to present them as," Superintendent Knowles said.

The operation has been a multi-agency exercise, involving NZ Defence force and NZ Customs working alongside Police and the Organised and Financial Crime Agency New Zealand (OFCANZ).

Full results of the operation are still being collated.

Media are invited to a briefing and photo opportunity at 2pm with Tasman Police District Commander, Superintendent Gary Knowles at the Red Devils pad, 14 Natalie St, Nelson.

There will be a media conference at Tasman District Police HQ, 3rd Floor Monro Building, Bridge St Nelson at 3pm today when further details and photo opportunities will be available.

The media conference will be led by Tasman Police District Commander, Superintendent Gary Knowles. Deputy Commissioner of Police Rob Pope and Director of OFCANZ Malcolm Burgess will also be in attendance.

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Media enquiries should be referred to the Tasman District Communications Manager on 027 4780853.