Police make habitual consorting arrests

Taskforce Maxima officers and police from the Mt Isa District have made arrests as part of a major operation targeting criminal activity and habitual consorting under the new serious and organised crime legislation, Queensland Police say.

Operation Quebec Schedule was established by the Organised Crime Gangs Group in partnership with the Mount Isa Police District targeting the criminal activities of the Rebels Outlaw Motorcycle Gang (OMCG) in the state’s north west.

On the Saturday morning, officers from Taskforce Maxima, State Intelligence, Tactical Crime Squad, general duties officers, and Criminal Investigation Branch detectives arrested men in Mount Isa, Cloncurry and Rockhampton.

As a result of the operation, six people were detained including patched members of the Rebels Mount Isa chapter.

A 51-year-old man – a member and former president of the Rebels OMCG – was arrested following the execution of a search warrant on a West Street, Winston home this morning

Officers searched the home and located drugs. He was charged with possess dangerous drugs and possess utensils.

At a West St, Menzies address a 24-year-old man was arrested and charged with possess dangerous drugs, possess utensils and obstruct police. The man was served with an official consorting warning.

A ….year old man, a member of the Rebels Mount Isa chapter, was located at Cloncurry and charged with Habitual Consorting.

A 56-year-old Winston man was arrested on the outskirts of Rockhampton and charged with possession of prohibited item (wearing rebels ring) and habitual consorting.

Two patched members of the Mount Isa Rebels club were located at Rockhampton during police operations policing a Rebel OMCG event and were taken into custody. The 44-year-old Townview man and 37-year-old Mornington man have both been charged with habitual consorting.

All have been released under strict bail conditions to appear in the Mount Isa Magistrates Court on August 7.

24 consorting warning were issued to 24 Rebels members.

On Friday, officers from Taskforce Maxima and Petrie Criminal Investigation Branch detectives arrested a confirmed member of the Rebels OMCG on the Gold Coast in relation to an alleged burglary with violence incident in Brisbane’s north on May 25.

The 29-year-old Main Beach man was charged with break and enter with intent, five counts of deprivation of liberty, three counts of robbery with violence, two counts of assault occasioning bodily harm whilst armed and in company, one count of wounding, one count of assault and three counts of unlawful use of a motor vehicle.

He has been remanded in custody to reappear in the Southport Magistrates Court tomorrow.

Police Minister Mark Ryan praised the work of Taskforce Maxima, saying the use of the Palaszczuk Government’s tough new anti-gang laws was making a difference in the fight against organised crime.

“These are the first OMCG members charged with habitual consorting since our tough new laws were passed last year to target organised crime gangs operating in Queensland,” Minister Ryan said.

“This will have a significant impact on the Mount Isa Rebel chapter.

“We will continue to use every legal mechanism available to dismantle and disrupt organised crime gangs operating in this state.”

The Organised Crime Gangs Group’s Tactical Operations Detective Inspector Tim Leadbetter said consorting legislation had proved to be a useful tool for police in their pursuit of the criminal elements of OMCGs.

“These arrests demonstrate the Queensland Police Service’s state-wide commitment to pursuing illegal activity of current and former members of organised crime groups and gang members,” Detective Inspector Leadbetter said.

“We have been transparent and overt in our intentions. Those charged were provided official warnings including details of who they should not consort with, along with an explanation of the legislation and ramifications. We will pursue those gang members who consort with recognised offenders as a deterrence to those establishing, maintaining or expanding criminal networks.

“The habitual consorting charge carries a potential three years imprisonment and anyone convicted of the offence can have control orders imposed by the courts. We have issued over 700 official warning notices state-wide targeting criminal networks and gangs. Recipients should understand the implications of disregarding these warning notices.”

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