Fourteen arrested as police launch Operation Achilles to target hoons

Victoria Police continues to crack down on illegal and dangerous hoon drivers, with 14 people arrested over the past two days in relation to a recent St Kilda hoon meet and the launch of a new state-wide operation.

Operation Achilles has been established following a rise in the number of illegal hoon meets and other intentional high risk driving (IHRD) events over the past few months.

As part of Achilles, investigators across the state will work together to reduce and disrupt hoon activity using shared intelligence to identify those responsible for organising hoon meets.

This intelligence will also be used to task proactive patrols to identified hoon hotpots using a range of personnel from across the state, including officers from the Highway Patrol, Crime Investigation Units, Divisional Response Units and local general duties police.

The operation will also see police continuing to proactively monitor known groups and targeting persons of interest in an effort to stop people from engaging in and organising illegal hoon meets.

Police will also be looking to engage with a range of different stakeholders to discuss potential infrastructure enhancements in key hoon hot spots.

Following thorough investigations over the past few weeks, detectives from the Port Phillip Crime Investigation Unit have arrested 14 people in relation to an alleged illegal hoon meet that occurred at Marine Parade, St Kilda on 21 January.

Police executed 14 search warrants over the past two days across a number of suburbs in metropolitan Melbourne including Springvale, Roxburgh Park, Boronia, Mernda, Hillside, Blackburn, Malvern East, Officer, Lalor, Dandenong North, Preston and Hampton Park.

They seized 12 cars including a 2015 Mercedes B GTS Roadster, 2011 Ford Falcon G6E sedan, 2016 Holden Commodore SS sedan, 1996 Ford Falcon XR6 sedan, 1994 Ford Falcon XR8 sedan, 1989 Nissan Skyline R31 sedan, 1995 Nissan 180 SX coupe, 1995 Holden Commodore S sedan, 2011 Mercedes C63 sedan, 1999 Nissan Stagea wagon, 1992 Holden Commodore Wagon and 2010 Ford XR6 sedan.

The total value of the cars seized across the two days is more than $370,000.

Those arrested include 14 men aged between 18 and 45-years-old.

They have been charged with offences including conduct endangering a person, possess prohibited weapons, possess controlled weapon, possess drug of dependence, possess imitation firearm, attempted criminal damage and behave in a riotous manner.

We want to reassure the community that this type of work will continue as part of Operation Achilles, with police committed to investigating illegal hoon activity and putting offenders before the court.

If you need immediate police assistance always call Triple Zero (000). Report any dangerous driving or hoon activity to your local police station or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Quotes attributable to Assistant Commissioner Russell Barrett:

“Hoon activity is dangerous and not simply a bit of harmless fun. We’ve seen these kinds of behaviours result in both death and serious injury.”

“Operation Achilles will target those who blatantly disregard the law and as a result, put the safety of the entire community at risk.”

“We know this type of behaviour is incredibly frustrating for local residents and police are committed to working closely with community groups to address their concerns.”

“We have no tolerance for illegal hoon activity and remain committed to disrupting and prosecuting anyone involved in this type of dangerous behaviour.”

“The penalties for hooning are significant and our message to anyone out there is simple – we will find you, arrest you, put you before the courts and seize your car.”

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