Police arrest 26 people as dozens of illicit firearms and prohibited weapons seized in Greater Geelong

Police have made 26 arrests across Greater Geelong as part of Operation Alliance and a concerted focus on other serious and violent offenders in the past month.

Operation Alliance, an ongoing state-wide operation which ran in the Greater Geelong area from 28 September to 16 October, was established to prevent, disrupt and dismantle youth street gangs responsible for crimes such as robberies, aggravated burglaries, serious assaults, car thefts, and home invasions.

Local police were supported by detectives from Crime Command and other specialist units and support services to target youth offenders engaged in networked offending.

In addition to this, police have also been focusing on other known offenders and persons of interest in relation to serious and violent crimes.

Of those arrested, six were remanded in custody while a total of more than 139 charges have been laid in Greater Geelong for offences including affray, reckless conduct endangering life, possess trafficable quantity of firearms, unlicensed person possess firearms, handle stolen goods and a range of other offences.

Firearm related crime was also key focus for police during this period, with the Geelong Firearms Prohibition Order (FPO) Service and Search team working alongside police on compliance searches and search warrants executed as part of the operation.

More than 21 Firearm Prohibition Orders (FPOs) were issued in Greater Geelong as police continue to target illicit firearm use to reduce the impact of firearms related violence in the community.

A total of 17 search warrants were executed at addresses across Geelong as part of Operation Alliance and a focus on broader serious and violent offending, resulting in the seizure of 15 firearms, 26 prohibited weapons, and three imitation firearms.

Stolen property to the value of approximately $100,000 was also recovered including four motorcycles and other items linked to a series of burglaries, aggravated burglaries and car thefts.

On Thursday 15 October, police made a number of arrests as part of Operation Alliance in relation to an affray and stabbing in North Geelong on 27 September. A total of six arrests were made following a series of simultaneous warrants executed Thursday morning.

Four of those arrested were connected to a known youth gang. A 17-year-old male from Herne Hill, 16-year-old male from Corio, 18-year-old male from Corio, 17-year-old male from Corio, 37-year old male from Bell Post Hill and 17-year-old male from Bell Post Hill were all charged with affray. A knife and knuckle duster were also seized as a result of the search warrants.

All males will reappear at the Geelong Magistrates Court or a children’s court at a later date.

Superintendent Craig Gillard said the arrests and seizure of dangerous items were a result of a carefully planned police response combined with the use of specialised resources.

“We set out to drive crime down and keep our local community safe, and these results are a testament to the multi-pronged approach we took to not only manage our Persons of Interest but to take the required action to prevent criminal behaviour from happening.”

“We know gun crime is of concern to the community and can have terrible outcomes for those who get caught up in it, so we are focused on holding offenders to account and using all available legislation to both detect and prevent crime.”

“We don’t need to think too far back to remember serious gun crime incidents that have taken place in our community and ended in truly tragic circumstances.”

“This is why it is so important for us to ensure that our most violent criminals and those we know have a propensity for violence and who present a risk to the community if they access firearms are prohibited from acquiring, possessing, carrying or using any firearm.”

Anyone with information about offences or gang activity is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au

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