Men wearing outlaw motorcycle colours charged as gang violence rises: RCMP
Four men have been charged in the Musquodoboit incident, three of whom were wearing Gatekeepers Outlaw Motorcycle Gang paraphernalia.
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An incident where motorcycle gang paraphernalia was seized after a group of men uttered threats and harassed a Musquodoboit resident highlights the “increase” in violence and gang activity around HRM, police say.
Around 8 p.m. on Oct. 9, Halifax RCMP along with Halifax Regional Police and the RCMP from Colchester and East Hants districts, were called to a disturbance at a home on Highway 224 in Upper Musquodoboit.
As officers responded, they met three motorcyclists en route matching the complainant’s description. They were pulled over and arrested, RCMP spokesman Cpl. Dal Hutchinson said Monday, and the Gatekeepers Outlaw Motorcycle Gang paraphernalia they were wearing was seized as part of the investigation.
A fourth person was also arrested later, but wasn't wearing any gang paraphernalia.
“We’ve seen an increase in violence, and these instances have not been reported to police - we’re hearing it through other sources,” Sgt. Mike Kerr of the RCMP said about the “significant” rise in gang activity since the Hells Angels arrived back in N.S. last June.
“(This is) one of the first cases where we could actually lay charges.”
However, Kerr said just because residents don’t often hear of charges or violent incidents doesn’t mean they’re not happening - and the thought from some that gangs will clean up communities and keep them safe through a monopoly is “ absolutely wrong.”
“These guys are breaking the rules of road, there’s nothing good about having the Hells Angels or any support club in our communities. They represent crime, drug trafficking and trying to emulate violence,” Kerr said.
Kerr said while it’s not illegal to wear outlaw motorcycle gang colours most of the time, it becomes an illegal intimidation tactic when paired with another criminal offence, and there are at least three people involved.
When the Hells Angels first arrived they operated as the London East chapter (out of Ontario) but are now Nomads New Brunswick, Kerr said, which means an increased presence in Nova Scotia and activity in support groups like the Gatekeepers.
The men charged are a 37-year-old from Upper Musquodoboit, a 38-year-old from Eastern Passage, 43-year-old from Dartmouth and 46-year-old from Cow Bay.
All four have been released on conditions and are due in Dartmouth provincial court on Nov. 30.