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Saturday, 30 July 2011

Police, merchants on gang alert after brawl

Posted On 06:05 0 comments

Portland bar owners and other merchants are being asked to ban customers wearing gang colors and other insignia after a fistfight involving two dozen motorcycle gang members on Commercial Street early Saturday evening.

Two men were arrested and two were treated for injuries at local hospitals after the brawl between members of three rival motorcycle gangs broke out shortly after 6 p.m. at Union Wharf and Commercial Street.

Jeffrey Vandermeiren, 43, of South Portland was charged with disorderly conduct and Thomas Glaude, 52, of Waldboro was charged with failing to disperse. Police would not identify which gangs were involved.

Portland police said they have stepped up their patrols, and the Portland Downtown District merchants association has urged business owners to be vigilant in efforts to control gang-related activity.

"To say this type of fighting and injury is bad for our image, especially during the tourist season, is an understatement," Janis Beitzer, executive director of the association, wrote in an email to members Wednesday.

Portland police said there is no reason to expect a return of violence that erupted during an Old Port turf battle between motorcycle gangs eight years ago when then-Police Chief Michael Chitwood announced a crackdown on gang activity in Portland. Since then, motorcycle gang activity there has mostly disappeared.

Lt. Gary Rogers said there were no weapons involved in the Saturday brawl, unlike the fighting eight years ago. He said the fight was unusual because it took place in broad daylight when tourists and families are often present.

"Usually this stuff happens after 11 p.m.," Rogers said.

Acting Police Chief Michael Sauschuck said he is stepping up patrols and taking other precautions to make sure the violence does not return.

Some merchants said the incident was probably isolated. Charles Bryon, owner of the Salt Exchange restaurant on Commercial Street, said he was unaware of any fighting until about a dozen police officers descended on the nearby scene.

He said he is more concerned about panhandlers and inebriated people wandering the streets than about gang violence.

Tanner Herget, owner of the 51 Wharf Restaurant, Ultra Lounge and FortiFem Martini Lounge and chairman of the Old Port's Night Life Oversight Committee, said fighting is rare for Portland's bar scene these days.

He said many bars have dress codes and security at the door. His own bar turns away about one-third of those trying to enter.

"We say casual chic and fashionable radiate good energy," Herget said.

 


Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Gangster poses happily with girlfriend months before he attacked her

Posted On 20:34 0 comments

Gangland thug Shane Lyons poses with his girlfriend -- months before he subjected her to an attack so savage she was left fearing for her life.

Lyons (41) locked his then girlfriend Fiona Kelly into his bedroom and brutally assaulted her and a close pal, Kerry Lee Ball, in a shocking incident at his southside home on August 31, 2009.

The Herald can reveal that Lyons is a notorious gangster who has links with 'Fat' Freddie Thompson's gang.

He was also involved in a major dispute with gangland boss Eamon 'The Don' Dunne over a stolen car, before 'The Don' was shot dead in a Cabra pub last year.

Lyons is also a convicted drugs trafficker who was jailed for four years in March 2001 after he admitting importing IR£160,000 worth of cannabis from South Africa.

choked

The violent crook has also links to veteran gangster Martin 'The Viper' Foley.

Yesterday, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Lyons (41) choked Ms Kelly before locking the door and telling her to "sleep on the floor like the animal she was".

A friend who tried to protect her was then beaten so badly by Lyons that she had to be taken away in an ambulance.

Lyons, Ms Kelly and her pal Kerry Lee Ball, who had given birth to a baby six weeks earlier, had all been on a night out together before he attacked them at his Rathfarnham, Dublin, home.

Ms Kelly described Lyons during the attack as "the face of pure evil".

Lyons had separated from his wife after she had a miscarriage and had been seeing Ms Kelly for six months at the time of the attack on August 31, 2009.

They had been out at a city-centre club and the two women had taken cocaine during the evening. Ms Kelly had told Lyons she wanted to go outside for a cigarette but instead went back to his home at Harold's Grange Road, Rathfarnham.

Garda Joanne Grogan told the court the accused had come home screaming that Ms Kelly had left him. He told her to get out of his bed and she went downstairs to a spare bedroom, where she packed to leave. Lyons told her "she wasn't driving her car" even though she told him she did not have the keys.

He pushed her against the bedroom wall, then followed her upstairs where he pushed her down on to his bed, got on top of her and 'strangled' her with both his hands.

Her body went limp, she could not breathe and her eyes felt like they were going to pop, as he told her she "was trying to make a fool out of him and wouldn't treat him like a thickie".

Her head going light, she stopped fighting and he let go.

He locked the bedroom door, threw a pillow at her and told her to sleep on the floor before taking the battery from her phone and putting it under his pillow when she tried to call her father.

He punched her to the side of the head at one point but eventually agreed to open the door, saying: "Fiona, I just didn't want you to drive home."

Ms Ball arrived and Ms Kelly told her what happened before trying to strike Lyons with a bottle opener. The accused grabbed Ms Kelly by the throat again, lifting her up on her "tippy toes", saying: "Who do you think you are, I'll f***ing kill you".

Ms Ball tried to pull him off Ms Kelly but he shoved her away twice and flung Ms Kelly on to the bed by her hair.

Again Ms Ball tried to stop him and he punched her full force to the side of the head.

Ms Kelly screamed at her friend to run, but Ms Ball tripped and fell and the accused got her by the arms and flung her out into his front garden, on to her back.

He then grabbed Ms Kelly by the throat again and pinned her to a car. Gardai and an ambulance arrived and Ms Ball was taken away on a spinal board.

In her victim impact statement, which she read out to the court, Ms Ball said she would never forget Lyons face on the night, his extreme rage, or her friend's face turning purple in colour.

Lyons hands were gripped "around her neck so tightly I thought she was almost dead", Ms Ball said.

She began blocking out what happened with prescription medication, she was in constant fear and her mother had to care for her newborn baby. Her relationship ended and she became withdrawn and paranoid, she said.

haunt

In her statement, Ms Kelly said she suffered flashbacks, nightmare and a lack of sleep as well as "vivid images" over and over in her head of the accused strangling her.

"It was the face of pure evil, a face that will haunt me for the rest of my life," her statement said. "I can honestly say I thought I was going to die and I would never see my children again."

Both women said the accused had shown no remorse since the incident. Lyons apologised through his barrister.

"Can he say it?" Ms Kelly asked.

"I can, yeah, I'm sorry for what happened," Lyons said from the dock.

The defendant's car dealership business had collapsed in the recession and a repossession order had been put on his home. Judge Hunt adjourned the case for sentencing to a date in December.

 


Sunday, 24 July 2011

Ex-Krays gangster lay dead in flat for 3 weeks

Posted On 01:16 0 comments

GANGSTER whose crime family provided the inspiration for cult film Get Carter, starring Michael Caine, lay dead in his Chelmsford flat for three weeks.

Vincent Landa, 78, who ran the gambling side of the Kray twins' gangland empire, was buried at Chelmsford Crematorium on Wednesday last week.


• • • •
Mr Landa moved to Chelmer Village in 2006 and beat cancer thanks to treatment at Broomfield Hospital, but he succumbed to a blood clot on his lung.

This week, friends, family and some "familiar faces" gathered at the funeral, on Writtle Road, to mourn his passing.

Mr Landa's coffin was wrapped in a Union Jack and one mourner drank from a can of Special Brew while others looked on sombrely.

His son Ben said: "Vincent exuded style and charisma, captivating many friends throughout his lifetime.

"He leaves behind seven children and six grandchildren and will be greatly missed."

In the 1960s Mr Landa moved to Newcastle upon Tyne to run an empire built on reconditioned Las Vegas fruit machines after the Government legalised one-armed bandits.

In 1967, his brother Michael Luvaglio was convicted of murdering Angus Sibbett, whose bullet-ridden body was found in his E-type Jaguar after he allegedly skimmed profits from Mr Landa's business.

The slaying was dubbed the "One-Armed Bandit Murder" and provided the inspiration for the movie Get Carter, starring Michael Caine and Britt Ekland.

Mr Landa was played by John Osborne, an Oscar-winning screenwriter and noted playwright.

His brother, who still maintains his innocence, snubbed the funeral and had not spoken to Mr Landa in decades.

While in Chelmsford, Mr Landa immersed himself in local life and was a tireless collector for the RAF Association's Wings Appeal – although he kept his dark past a secret from colleagues.

Chelmsford branch chairman Ralph Tyrell said: "He was a very hard-working collector and never shouted – he just got on with the job.

"He was struggling with cancer and I remember his hair fell out, and then he grew a ponytail because he vowed never to cut it again.

"He never talked about his past. I am surprised to learn about that – it may be good that I didn't know."

Mr Landa racked up an £8 million fortune in the North East, and his family led a luxury lifestyle dominated by sports cars and exotic holidays.

After his brother's arrest, Mr Landa left the country and toured the Mediterranean on his yacht.

He returned to the UK in 1978 and led a "colourful life", according to his son.

But after a series of arson attacks on his businesses, Mr Landa went bankrupt and moved to Florida, before spending the final years of his life in Chelmsford.

Ben said: "After fighting and beating the cancer, Vincent was approached by a film director with a script and asked to act as a technical advisor in the making of a film of his life.

"It was subsequently announced at the Cannes Film Festival that the venture had gained sufficient funding from [production company] MonteCristo to go ahead.

"The film was to begin production, however, the producer Patrick Lavelle tragically died from cancer and, as such, the film is currently on hold."

Mr Landa's intriguing life was not confined to slot machines and gangsters.

He served with the Royal Air Force Police, where he was posted to Germany, and he learned German, French, Italian, Spanish and Greek throughout his lifetime.

Mr Landa also fancied himself as a boxer and trained hard in the Repton Boys club made infamous by Ronnie and Reggie Kray.

After splitting from the twins, Vincent obtained a franchise for the whole of the UK to market a television converter enabling all existing television sets only in receipt of BBC to receive ITV as well.

Ben believes this was comparable to the current phenomena of the analogue switch to digital.

 


Thursday, 21 July 2011

Mafia boss "Vinny Gorgeous" gets life sentence, again

Posted On 00:47 0 comments

Reputed mob boss Vincent "Vinny Gorgeous" Basciano, who dodged the death penalty only weeks ago, was sentenced in a New York court to life in prison on Wednesday for ordering the murder of a mafia associate.

Basciano, the former acting boss of New York's Bonanno crime family, is already serving a life sentence for a separate 2001 murder.

"The court imposes consecutive life sentences in order to convey to Basciano, to other members of organized crime, to his victims and to the public, that while he has only one life with which to pay for his crimes, the debt he owes to society is far greater," U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis said in Wednesday's proceedings in federal court in Brooklyn.

Basciano, who appeared in a navy-blue prison jumpsuit, made a rambling statement accusing the government of building its cases against him on the testimony of unreliable cooperating witnesses.

He demanded the court turn over the name of a fellow inmate who told prosecutors that Basciano was assembling a hit list from within prison walls, targeting a federal prosecutor, among others.

"What's to stop anyone from making an allegation?" Basciano asked. He did not address his conviction in May of the murder of reputed mob associate Randolph Pizzolo, the crime for which he received his most recent life sentence.

Prosecutors allege that Basciano ordered Pizzolo killed to send a message to other members of the crime family that he was firmly in charge.

Federal prosecutors had sought the death penalty for the Pizzolo murder, arguing that Basciano would remain a threat even if allowed to live out his days in prison.

During the trial's penalty phase, prosecutors pointed to testimony and evidence that Basciano had ordered and tried to order hits on several people while behind bars, including a federal prosecutor and the mother of one of his own godchildren.

But the jury took just hours to reject the death penalty. Garaufis noted during Wednesday's hearing that taxpayers had spent roughly $5 million on Basciano's defense during the most recent murder trial and death penalty phase.

An attorney for Basciano, George Goltzer, said his client would appeal the court's judgment.

"A higher court will decide his fate," Goltzer said.

 


Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Gangster still at large after officer gunned down in South Croydon

Posted On 23:11 0 comments

A gunman is being hunted by detectives after shooting and seriously injuring a police officer on a routine patrol in South Croydon.

PC Wayne Stevens had to undergo surgery after a bullet from the gun shattered his elbow.

The gunman, who is believed to have connections to the gang Don't Say Nothing (DSN), escaped after firing two shots at pursuing officers just after 10pm on Friday night.

PC Stevens is still recovering in hospital and is in a stable condition.

The brave officer was honoured with a hospital visit from the outgoing Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson on Sunday night following his resignation over the News of the World phone hacking scandal, which is engulfing the Met Police and some national newspapers.

Croydon councillor Steve O'Connell, a Greater London Assembly member who sits on the Metropolitan Police Authority, said: "It shocks me there are young people who seem to be very casual in their use of weapons of death and destruction such as knives or guns and that they would use a weapon on a uniformed officer.

"I think this is an unusual incident. Mercifully the PC will recover. This must concentrate our minds even more on making sure that guns and knives are removed from our streets."

Demar Provan, 21, from West Norwood and Adewale Ogunsanya, 22, of Streatham, appeared at Croydon Magistrates' Court on Monday charged with possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and possession of ammunition.

PC Stevens is the second policeman to be seriously injured in Croydon this year.

On May 19, PC Nigel Albuery suffered severe kidney damage when he was stabbed four times while trying to stop and search a group of youths in Bute Road.

In the latest incident police were called to Kingsdown Road after an off-duty police officer saw three men acting suspiciously near his home.

The trio were seen taking pictures of one another on their mobile phones in the stairwell of a block of flats.

Officers were called to the scene and attempted to stop and question the men as they walked down Kingsdown Road.

Two men were arrested but another fled, pulling a gun on pursuing officers as he ran away and firing at them from 10ft (3m) away.

Mr Provan and Mr Ogunsanya have been remanded in custody and are due to appear at Croydon Crown Court on September 23.

A third man was arrested that night on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm and possession of drugs. He has been bailed.

PC Stevens has also been praised for his courage by his superiors.

Croydon Borough Commander Adrian Roberts said: "I am deeply proud of the officers who were on duty on Friday night and who provided a first class response, not only to their injured colleague but in arresting three suspects so quickly.

"The wounded officer showed true bravery that night and his welfare and recovery remain a top priority for me.

"Thankfully, this kind of incident doesn’t happen very often in Croydon. However, it is a risk each and every officer has to face day-in, day-out and it is our job and our duty to keep the public safe and to ensure that people committing these crimes are brought to justice.

"I would like to reassure the public of my continued commitment to tackling serious crime across the borough."

Police Commander Tony Easthaugh said: "I am outstandingly proud of our officers who put themselves in positions of danger on a daily basis to protect the communities of London.

"It is sad an unarmed officer has been shot while performing his duty to the public. Our thoughts are with him and his family."

Councillor Simon Hoar, the council’s cabinet member for community safety, said: “This incident demonstrates the very real dangers police officers face every day on the streets of London.

"We will continue to work with the police in making our communities safer and our thoughts are with the officer as he makes his recovery.”

 


Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Armed robbers have invaded a luxury Rio de Janeiro hotel, robbing guests of money and phones, Brazilian police say.

Posted On 14:39 0 comments


Four men scaled the wall to enter the Santa Teresa Hotel in central Rio early in the morning, officers said.

Rio authorities have been occupying several shantytowns to root out drug gangs and tackle violent crime.

But security is an issue for Rio as it prepares to hold World Cup matches in 2014 and host the 2016 Olympics.

The Santa Teresa hotel, located in the neighbourhood of the same name, offers "peace of mind and safety" to guests, according to its website.

But security cameras showed four men getting over the perimeter wall in the early hours of Monday.

The attackers stole from at least 10 guests, among them foreign tourists, Brazilian media reported.

The robbers escaped and there were no reports of any injuries to the guests.

Preparations
Rio de Janeiro has long suffered a reputation for robberies and violence.

Last August gunmen took a group of some 30 people hostage at the Hotel Intercontinental, in Rio's Sao Conrado area, after a gun battle with police in a nearby street.

The authorities have stepped up efforts to tackle violent crime, with police units deployed in recent months in several favelas.

The city is currently hosting the World Military Games, bringing together some 6,000 athletes from 113 countries.

The event is being seen as part of preparations for the World Cup and the Olympics.


Friday, 15 July 2011

Latin Kings leader was convicted Thursday of ordering a hit on a Lodi woman so she couldn't testify about a gang-related shooting.

Posted On 10:00 0 comments



After 2 1/2 days of deliberations, jurors found Juan "King Black Rose" Rosario guilty of the attempted murder of Monica Penalba of Lodi in February 2005.

The jurors also convicted him of aggravated assault and conspiracy to commit murder, but they acquitted him of two weapons charges.

Rosario faces up to 20 years in prison on the attempted murder conviction when he is sentenced on Sept. 9.

Rosario, whose courtroom outbursts punctuated his four-week trial in Hackensack and who was at one point kicked out of the courtroom, once again cursed at prosecutors and hurled expletives at detectives after the verdict was read.

The burly state corrections officers who watched him closely throughout the trial hurried him from the courtroom.

"This verdict will certainly be appealed," said Donald Liberman, Rosario's lawyer.

Thursday's verdict concludes a six-year-old case that began when 18-year-old Ralph Pinto of Hasbrouck Heights and a confederate beat and robbed Jose Vega at his South Hackensack home on Feb. 17, 2005.

Vega, a top Latin Kings leader, contacted Rosario, who leads the Passaic chapter of the street gang, and the two organized a revenge crew to kidnap Pinto the next day from a Lodi parking lot, prosecutors said.

The plot failed when Pinto put up a fight and was shot dead.

Penalba was recruited for the attempted kidnapping because she had a car, prosecutors said. But once Pinto was killed, Rosario decided that Penalba had to be killed because she was not a "Latin Queen" and might talk to police, prosecutors said.

A few hours later, a group of gang members and wannabe gang members took Penalba to a Paterson carwash, where they stabbed her 32 times and ran her over twice with her own car. Penalba survived the attack but underwent months of intensive treatment.

Rosario, 50, was not present when Penalba was attacked, but prosecutors charged him as an accomplice to the stabbing and presented witnesses who testified that the attack ultimately was his call.

"I am happy that despite the fact that he was not present at the scene, the jury was able to navigate through the difficult concepts of accomplice and co-conspirator liability in finding him guilty," said Catherine Fantuzzi, an assistant Bergen County prosecutor.

One of the admitted stabbers, Russell Aquino of Fair Lawn, testified during the trial that, as a wannabe gang member, he volunteered to stab Penalba and plunged a knife into her several times.

Aquino, who has since pleaded guilty of attempted murder and faces up to 14 years in prison, said Rosario was so happy with his performance that he "crowned" him as a Latin King.

Rosario, meanwhile, was not happy with that testimony.

"I will see you in prison, kid," he shouted in court. "You are dead, [expletive.]"

That threat in open court got Rosario thrown out of the courtroom. He attended his trial the next day through audio-visual equipment while sitting in a cell at the Bergen County Jail.

The threat also earned Rosario a first-degree witness-intimidation charge, which Fantuzzi announced Thursday.


Thursday, 14 July 2011

This Flats gangster was gunned down by four men during morning peak hour near a busy Cape Flats taxi rank.

Posted On 18:57 0 comments



Residents say Hanover Park taxi marshall Shamiem Nell, 25, cheated death once before but wasn’t as lucky the second time when he was ambushed by members the Mongrels gang.

Shamiem, a member of the Americans gang, was killed on the corner of Hanover Park Avenue and Surran Road shortly after 7am where he was waiting for his taxi to arrive.

Witnesses say four men fled the scene after the cold-blooded shooting on the mist-shrouded corner.

A resident who knew the victim told the Daily Voice about the first time Shamiem was targeted.

“On Monday, members of the Mongrels gang opened fire on him but then he managed to run away,” says the man. “He was very lucky that time but this morning he wasn’t so lucky.


Cops patrol Hanover Park area after Shamiem Nel was murdered.
inlsa
“He was standing on the corner waiting for his lift, as he does every morning.

“Then four guys snuck up on either side of him – two on the left and two on the right – and he had nowhere to run.”

He says Shamiem recently started working on the Grassy Park route because of the war between the two gangs.

“He just got a child a few months ago and he had to earn a living in spite of the tension. So he started working on the Grassy Park line to ensure his safety,” says the witness.

“He was a good man who just got involved in the wrong things.”

Scores of residents crowded along the busy road were shocked when they saw a trail of blood gushing from the wound in the marshall’s head.

One resident was heard saying: “This is terrible. This feud is far from over.”

While his family was too traumatised to talk, friends and neighbours filled Shamiem’s Soetwater Court home to offer their condolences.

Police spokesperson, Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut, says cops have opened a murder docket.

“A 25-year-old man was fatally wounded in the head while on his way to work as a taxi guard at the Hanover Park taxi rank. Witnesses saw four men fleeing the scene immediately after the shooting,” he says.

“The motive for the murder is yet unknown although gangsterism is not excluded.”

No arrests have been made.

Shamiem’s shooting comes less than 24 hours after members from the Mongrels gang opened fire on an former Americans gang member’s home.

Tuesday’s Hanover Park shooting, just after 9am, saw three men fire several shots at a house in Turfburg Walk.

A resident says the men who were each armed “emptied their guns” before fleeing the scene.

“An ex-American gangster lives at the house but he wasn’t there at the time,” says the woman.

“However the three men started shooting at a member of the Chico Boys Gang who was sitting outside the house at the time.”

A source close to the investigation says “more than 10 shots were fired” but no one was injured.

No arrests have been made in this matter either.

This is the latest in a string of brutal murders in Cape Flats streets.

Thirteen-year-old Elsies River teen Jozwill Cloete, was enjoying the first day of his school holidays last month when two rival gangs opened fire on each other, killing him in the crossfire; a 20-year-old woman was injured.

It was a bloody month-end which also saw the fatal shooting of Yaseen Sparks, 16, in gang-related violence in Bonteheuwel.

In separate shooting incidents in March, Dale Jordaan, 15, and Shaquille Jacobs, 15, as well as Sergio Domingo, 21, from Lavender Hill, also died when members of the Junky Funky Kids opened fire on them from a speeding car.


Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Mob hit' is poorly executed

Posted On 11:39 0 comments

This alleged hit man should have watched "The Godfather" a few more times to see how it's done.

Unlike Al Pacino's cool-headed Michael Corleone, suspected Albanian Mafia gangster Bajram Lajqi allegedly blew a planned hit on another gangster because he let his temper get the best of him.

Lajqi turned what might have been a quiet murder on a darkened New York street into a public spectacle in a crowded restaurant, according to an account filed by Brooklyn federal prosecutor Steven Tiscione.

Lajqi was busted recently by the feds on drug-trafficking charges and firing a gun in connection with narcotics smuggling.


It all began when Lajqi and his henchman went looking for a man who allegedly had been involved in a drug-smuggling scheme with them, which led to a falling out, authorities said.

Shortly before midnight on June 3, Lajqi and his cohort, Carlos Alvarez, went to the Tosca Cafe on East Tremont Avenue in The Bronx, the report says.

Before entering the restaurant, investigators believe the pair first located their intended victim's car, which was parked outside, and punctured all its tires.

NYPD detectives and Drug Enforcement Administration agents investigating the incident later came to believe this was a tactic aimed at making it hard for the victim to flee.

But apparently the mere sight of his intended victim was too much for Lajqi to bear, and, channeling Joe Pesci in "GoodFellas," he walked right over and allegedly punched him in the face.

Then Lajqi whipped out a pistol and turned it on a bouncer who intervened -- but that gave the marked-for-death man a chance to run out the door, the report says.

The mobsters ran after him, and when Lajqi caught up, he allegedly fired several shots at the man outside the eatery.

The victim was hit in his left and right thighs, the report says, but he somehow was able to run away and later sought treatment at a hospital.

Even worse for Lajqi, the entire scene was caught on surveillance tape, authorities said.

With the help of informants, federal investigators discovered that Lajqi and the victim had allegedly been partners in a pot-trafficking organization, the report says.

 


SYDNEY gangster armed with a World War II pistol has been shot dead in a botched Gold Coast home invasion believed to be linked to drugs.

Posted On 11:34 0 comments


The man, 34, was shot in the leg with a vintage Luger pistol after a struggle with the homeowner at Silvereye Circuit in Gilston in the Gold Coast Hinterland in the early hours of this morning.

Sources say the 29-year-old homeowner told police he arrived home about 1.40am to be confronted by four masked men inside the house.

He told police he wrestled with one of the intruders and the gun discharged, the bullet hitting the man's femoral artery.

Bleeding profusely, he staggered outside and into the street where he dropped dead, leaving a 50m blood trail in his wake.

This afternoon, police charged the homeowner with manslaughter. He is expected to face Southport Magistrates Court tomorrow morning.

Sources said drugs were believed to be at the centre of the shooting and the four men who took part in the home invasion had travelled up from Sydney.

Earlier, Gold Coast police regional crime co-ordinator Tim Trezise said the spate of gun crimes on the Gold Coast, including the fatal shooting in May of police officer Damian Leeding, was upsetting the community and putting pressure on police.

"It continues to be a concern to police and the whole community in relation to firearm offences and offences of this ilk," he said.

"We've had a number of these offences this year and it's certainly placing some pressure on police resources to have to continue to attend to these matters.

"I spoke to a couple of residents out there this morning and they were quite shocked that such a thing had happened in their quiet suburban street.

"To wake up and find a deceased male person laying in the middle of your street, who had allegedly been the victim of a gunshot, is obviously of serious concern.


GANGSTER Dave Courtney has called on vigilantes not to avenge the murder of his cagefighter stepson.

Posted On 01:44 0 comments



The appeal comes as police fearing bloodbath reprisals prepare to quiz the hardman as a suspect.

The underworld legend told the Daily Star Sunday that loyal mobsters from around Britain had offered to hunt down and kill the hoods who blasted Genson Courtney, 23, to death.

The muscle-bound lad was talking on the phone in his VW Golf outside his girlfriend’s house when he was shot in Greenwich, south-east London.

Courtney, 52, is torn between avenging the murder to “save face” in the underworld and letting justice run its course.

But last night he said: “I’m appealing to everyone to keep their calm and let the police do their job. I want the people who are calling for revenge to slow down and calm down.

“It doesn’t need any vigilantes going out there, trying to mend this, revenge it, as I have every faith in the police that they will catch the geezer.

“That’s an appeal to my associates and to those in Genson’s circle.”

Police are still hunting the killer but fear gangs will seek retribution.

Gangsters close to Courtney have already pledged their support in visits to the home he calls “Camelot” in Plumstead, south London.

One told the Daily Star Sunday: “He’s been offered assistance from some very heavy duty people to sort this problem out.

“But he doesn’t want to be in a position where he’s forced to take justice into his own hands.

“Dave is praying the police catch the person who killed his son before someone brings the perpetrators to him.

“He is a hardman but in this case he just wants the violence to stop and for justice to take its course.”

The killing outside the house of Genson’s girlfriend Ginny, 24, last Sunday was a suspected revenge hit over a drugs feud. 

And it has “ripped the family apart”.

London’s crack black-on-black gun crime squad Trident has launched a manhunt.

But so have gangland big hitters close to Courtney. 

The bullet-headed bruiser told a pal: “If you would have asked me yesterday what I would do if someone shot my kid, I would have said that I would be driving around with a car-load of men looking for the person who shot him.

“But now it’s happened I don’t want to carry on the cycle of violence vibe.” Pals who visited Courtney at his home last week included the “King of Marbella”, John Disley, from Lancashire, reportedly worth around £500million.

He said: “I’m letting Dave know that I’m here. It’s not a good situation.”

And a notorious armed robber from the South Coast said: “I’m here to give Dave a message that if he wants help he’s got it. We’re here to protect Dave.”

Gangsters from Sheffield, Cardiff and Liverpool offered assistance.

Cagefighting champion Mark Epstein and boxer Julius Francis also paid their respects.

We can also reveal that Courtney is a suspect in the murder and will be officially quizzed by Trident cops during the investigation.

Detectives learned Courtney and Genson had a “straightener” punch-up in a park after a family row.

Underworld sources said a drugs dispute was behind the murder which could spark a gang war in the area. They claimed Genson was taxing rivals and had built a list of enemies.

Last night the victim’s mother Jenny Courtney, 42, admitted Genson had started flying into rages after taking steroids.

Jenny wept as she said: “My son’s gone. I loved him so much. I’m devastated. Absolutely. I think he was taking steroids because his personality changed.

“He was raging around, always angry. It wasn’t normal. I don’t know what was behind the shooting but it was probably drugs.

“He’d been in a few arguments recently with a number of people and only a few days ago I was warned that this might happen.”

Genson had two younger sisters Courtney Courtney, 13, and Davena, 22. Fighting back tears, Davena said: “He’d just left home on Sunday night and went round to his girlfriend’s.

“I last saw him about 9.30. The last words I said to him were ‘Be careful’ like I always do.

“He said ‘I love you sis’. He was very, very protective over us. He lived for us. He’d always joked around.

“I keep expecting him to get up and say, ‘I’m only joking. I’m OK. I’m not hurt’.”

Younger sister Courtney said: “I loved him. I always used to say that if I had a last phone call it would be to my brother.

“He had his own problems but he wouldn’t be angry with me. I need him. I love him so much.

“I never thought gangs were good and this is proof of it.”

GANGSTER Dave Courtney has called on vigilantes not to avenge the murder of his cagefighter stepson.

The appeal comes as police fearing bloodbath reprisals prepare to quiz the hardman as a suspect.

The underworld legend told the Daily Star Sunday that loyal mobsters from around Britain had offered to hunt down and kill the hoods who blasted Genson Courtney, 23, to death.

The muscle-bound lad was talking on the phone in his VW Golf outside his girlfriend’s house when he was shot in Greenwich, south-east London.

Courtney, 52, is torn between avenging the murder to “save face” in the underworld and letting justice run its course.

But last night he said: “I’m appealing to everyone to keep their calm and let the police do their job. I want the people who are calling for revenge to slow down and calm down.

“It doesn’t need any vigilantes going out there, trying to mend this, revenge it, as I have every faith in the police that they will catch the geezer.

“That’s an appeal to my associates and to those in Genson’s circle.”

Police are still hunting the killer but fear gangs will seek retribution.

Gangsters close to Courtney have already pledged their support in visits to the home he calls “Camelot” in Plumstead, south London.

One told the Daily Star Sunday: “He’s been offered assistance from some very heavy duty people to sort this problem out.

“But he doesn’t want to be in a position where he’s forced to take justice into his own hands.

“Dave is praying the police catch the person who killed his son before someone brings the perpetrators to him.

“He is a hardman but in this case he just wants the violence to stop and for justice to take its course.”

The killing outside the house of Genson’s girlfriend Ginny, 24, last Sunday was a suspected revenge hit over a drugs feud. 

And it has “ripped the family apart”.

London’s crack black-on-black gun crime squad Trident has launched a manhunt.

But so have gangland big hitters close to Courtney. 

The bullet-headed bruiser told a pal: “If you would have asked me yesterday what I would do if someone shot my kid, I would have said that I would be driving around with a car-load of men looking for the person who shot him.

“But now it’s happened I don’t want to carry on the cycle of violence vibe.” Pals who visited Courtney at his home last week included the “King of Marbella”, John Disley, from Lancashire, reportedly worth around £500million.

He said: “I’m letting Dave know that I’m here. It’s not a good situation.”

And a notorious armed robber from the South Coast said: “I’m here to give Dave a message that if he wants help he’s got it. We’re here to protect Dave.”

Gangsters from Sheffield, Cardiff and Liverpool offered assistance.

Cagefighting champion Mark Epstein and boxer Julius Francis also paid their respects.

We can also reveal that Courtney is a suspect in the murder and will be officially quizzed by Trident cops during the investigation.

Detectives learned Courtney and Genson had a “straightener” punch-up in a park after a family row.

Underworld sources said a drugs dispute was behind the murder which could spark a gang war in the area. They claimed Genson was taxing rivals and had built a list of enemies.

Last night the victim’s mother Jenny Courtney, 42, admitted Genson had started flying into rages after taking steroids.

Jenny wept as she said: “My son’s gone. I loved him so much. I’m devastated. Absolutely. I think he was taking steroids because his personality changed.

“He was raging around, always angry. It wasn’t normal. I don’t know what was behind the shooting but it was probably drugs.

“He’d been in a few arguments recently with a number of people and only a few days ago I was warned that this might happen.”

Genson had two younger sisters Courtney Courtney, 13, and Davena, 22. Fighting back tears, Davena said: “He’d just left home on Sunday night and went round to his girlfriend’s.

“I last saw him about 9.30. The last words I said to him were ‘Be careful’ like I always do.

“He said ‘I love you sis’. He was very, very protective over us. He lived for us. He’d always joked around.

“I keep expecting him to get up and say, ‘I’m only joking. I’m OK. I’m not hurt’.”

Younger sister Courtney said: “I loved him. I always used to say that if I had a last phone call it would be to my brother.

“He had his own problems but he wouldn’t be angry with me. I need him. I love him so much.

“I never thought gangs were good and this is proof of it.”


Friday, 8 July 2011

Cops are investigating whether an alleged gangster was killed in a hit after he went down in a hail of bullets on Wednesday night.

Posted On 17:50 0 comments



Desmond Spalding, 34, was hit three times in the head when gunmen opened fire on him and a friend in full view of passersby.

The alleged Americans gangster was walking down First Avenue towards Vygekraal informal settlement in Athlone at about 8.45pm when a white Opel Corsa Bakkie with tinted windows drove up behind them.

Witnesses say the occupants of the bakkie rolled down the passenger window and started shooting at the men.

Desmond was hit several times while bullet shrapnel grazed his friend’s cheek.

Now cops are investigating if the alleged gangster was killed in a hit.

“After the shots were fired, the bakkie reversed and turned into Fifth Avenue and drove off. All the shots were fired from inside the bakkie and that’s the sign of a true marksman,” says a police source. “The shots were on target and they didn’t even get out of the bakkie.”

Desmond’s aunt Vivien Pitts, 68, says she doesn’t understand why he was murdered in cold blood.

“We’re all in shock by what happened and I keep asking myself why this happened because he wasn’t a violent person,” says Vivien.

Athlone police spokesman Warrant Officer Ian Bennett says police are investigating cases of murder and attempted murder.


Thursday, 7 July 2011

The 23-year-old stepson of self-proclaimed gangster Dave Courtney, Genson Courtney, has been found dead in a car in Greenwich, south London, after a fatal shooting on Sunday night.

Posted On 17:32 0 comments

Mr Courtney was found in a black Volkswagen Golf with gunshot wounds to his head and shoulder just before 11pm and was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital around five hours later.

Former gangster Dave Courtney was renowned for his use of the 'knuckle duster' (PA)
The motive for the attack remains unclear, although officers from Scotland Yard's gun crime unit Trident are looking for a male suspect who fled the scene shortly after shots were fired.
Mr Courtney's family ties to Dave Courtney, who has written books about his past experiences, have already focused media attention on the incident near the Pelton Arms pub on Banning Street, Greenwich.
Courtney Snr, 52, is a celebrity-gangster figure and former East End bareknuckle boxer who claims links to the infamous Kray twins and reputed London criminal Lenny 'The Guv'nor' McLean.
He has written books and starred in films, playing on his 'gangster' image, although he also spent time in Belmarsh Prison as a high-security inmate.
Although circumstances surrounding the incident involving his stepson remain cloudy - and there is no suggestion from police at this stage that the shooting was gang related - Trident detective chief inspector Mark Gower has offered witness protection to anyone who comes forward with information.
Mr Gower, who is leading the murder investigation, said: 'At this early stage it is believed a male suspect may have ran from the scene in the direction of Christchurch Way, shortly after the shooting.
'I am appealing to anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious to contact the police.
'I would like to reassure anyone concerned about contacting the police that Trident has great expertise in protecting witnesses and there are a huge variety of measures that can be put in place to protect you.'


Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Steroid use led to my stepson's murder,Former gangster Dave Courtney said.

Posted On 14:32 0 comments

Former gangster Dave Courtney told today he feared his stepson's steroid use may have prompted a row that led to him being shot dead in his car.

Cage fighter Genson Courtney was gunned down in a gangland-style assassination as he got into a VW Golf outside the home of his girlfriend Ginny in Greenwich.

His stepfather, who was jailed in the Eighties for attacking five men with a meat cleaver, paid tribute to the 23-year-old today. He said he and Genson's mother Jenny had concerns over his use of steroids to help him train for cage fighting: "It is in you 24 hours a day. That fact contributed to the altered personality I knew of my son.

"He started taking it and then he turned into that. Someone has got the hump with him enough to shoot him in the head. He was not always as quick-tempered as he was at the end."

Genson was shot in Banning Street at about 10.50pm on Sunday and died the next morning. Operation Trident is investigating. Detectives suspect a drugs baron owed thousands of pounds by Genson ordered his killing.

His stepfather, 53, said: "He was what would be considered a naughty boy but he had honour and respect. There are a lot of people who want to put this right. I am in no doubt police will catch the person who's done it. I am just praying they catch him before it becomes common knowledge who it was."

Jenny, 42, said: "He was a good boy. Ginny is distraught. We live in a gun and knife culture. You never think it is going to happen to yours." Friends paid their respects at the family home in Plumstead, named Camelot Castle. Visitors included cage fighter Mark "The Beast" Epstein and boxer Julius Francis.

Dave Courtney has written books on his criminal past. He claims to be the model for Vinnie Jones's role in Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels

 


High Court battle for Sutton drugs gangster’s assets

Posted On 14:25 0 comments

SUTTON drugs baron who was responsible for flooding the area with millions of pounds worth of narcotics could be stripped of his criminally-obtained assets.

Prosecutors have launched a High Court action against dangerous gangster John Dawes, formerly of Tudor Street, to claw back his assets - which include property, cash and endowment policies.

As ring-leader of the notorious Dawes gang, he was convicted of money laundering and conspiring to deal in narcotics after a nine-week trial at Nottingham Crown Court in May 2005.

The gangster was later hit with a £355,000 confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act - but the Crown Prosecution Service’s (CPS) efforts to enforce that bill are still continuing and are set for a hearing at London’s High Court in late November.

As well as cash and endowment policies, the CPS’s Proceeds of Crime Unit had targeted Dawes’ family home - which is a substantial detached bungalow - and a large static caravan at a site in Skegness.

On Monday, CPS lawyers told Judge Rabinder Singh QC the investigation encompasses ‘a number of properties’ currently the subject of restraining orders, which is preventing their sale.

The judge gave directions for the enforcement hearing, due to take place in the week beginning 28th November. Dawes’ wife, Helen Dawes, is also expected to be represented.

Dawes was caged for 24 years and, at the trial, he was told by Judge Michael Pert: “You were a ruthless, cunning, unscrupulous and dangerous man. You are a bully. You enforced your wishes through violence and you made sure people knew that.”

His trial followed a four-year undercover investigation by detectives to dismantle the complex, multi-million pound drug empire which had links in Holland and Spain.

During the sting operation, officers found that the gang members were importing amphetamines and shrink-wrapped kilo blocks of heroin, which were being cut up into ounces before being sold.

They discovered an intricate web of drug runners and traffickers who were all linked to the gang. There was also a team of thugs who would act on behalf of the crime boss and caused terror on the streets of Ashfield.

Jailed alongside Dawes in 2005 were Ryan Smith, formerly of Ashland Road, Sutton, who was imprisoned for 14 years; his father Arthur Dawes, formerly of Taylor Crescent, Sutton, who was imprisoned for eight years and Rebecca Bridge, who lived at Central Avenue, Ingoldmells, Skegness, and was imprisoned for four years

 


Monday, 4 July 2011

The 23-year-old stepson of former gangster Dave Courtney has died after being shot in east London

Posted On 14:21 0 comments

.


Police at the scene where Genson Courtney was found shot in the head
Police found Genson Courtney in a black Volkswagen Golf on Banning Street, Greenwich, with gunshot wounds to his head and shoulder late on Sunday night.
He was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Woolwich where he was pronounced dead early this morning.
Officers from the Met's Trident unit, which specialises in gun crime, have launched a murder investigation.
They have appealed for anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious to contact them.
"At this early stage it is believed a male suspect may have ran from the scene in the direction of Christchurch Way shortly after the shooting," DCI Mark Gower said.
"I would like to reassure anyone concerned about contacting the police that Trident has great expertise in protecting witnesses.
"There are a huge variety of measures that can be put in place to protect you."


Sunday, 3 July 2011

Maniac Latin Disciples street gang targeted

Posted On 19:00 0 comments


Police began their crackdown on the MLD’s after one of the gangs’ members was arrested for his role in a gang-related shooting earlier this month in which two young victims were struck and injured at a Northwest Side park.  Through investigation and surveillance, Gang Investigation Unit personnel uncovered evidence of animal cruelty and dog fighting perpetrated by MLD gang members.  That information resulted in the three warrants executed Wednesday.  In total, seven dogs were rescued and five members of the Maniac Latin Disciples were arrested on various charges.
Police executed one of the search warrants in the 3000 block of North Kimball.  Police arrested Jose Rios, 29, of the 3000 block of North Kimball.  Rios was charged with three counts of Possession of a Vicious Dog by Felon and one count of Resisting a Police Officer, all misdemeanors.
Four individuals were arrested following execution of a search warrant in the 3500 block of West Montrose.  Marquis Falls, 25, of the 3500 block of West Montrose was charged with one count of Possession of a Vicious Dog by Felon.  Eric Rivera, 21, of the 3500 block of West Montrose was charged with one count each of Cruelty to Animals, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Keeping a Place of Prostitution and Violation of Animal Owner’s Duties.  Alfredo Ramos, 18, of the 2900 block of North Kedzie was charged with one count of Cruelty to Animals and one count of Violation of Animal Owner’s Duties.  Julio Mendoza, 18, of the 3500 block of West Montrose was charged with one count each of Cruelty to Animals, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and Violation of Animal Owner’s Duties. 
A third warrant was executed in the 1500 block of North Springfield in which three dogs were recovered, however the target of the warrant was not apprehended at the time the warrant was executed.  On today’s date the Gang Investigations Unit’s Animal Crimes Team arrested the target of the search warrant, Jose Morales.  Morales, 22, of the 1500 block of North Springfield was charged with three counts of Cruelty to Animals and three counts of Violation of Animal Owner’s Duties.
This is an on-going Gang Investigations Unit investigation and additional members of the Maniac Latin Disciples are being sought by police.
Rios, Falls, Rivera, Ramos and Mendoza all have scheduled court dates of July 26th at Harrison and Kedzie.  Morales has a scheduled court date of 23 August, also at Harrison and Kedzie.


Friday, 1 July 2011

Police say the Ibrahim family is not cooperating with investigations into another drive-by shooting last night

Posted On 22:27 0 comments

Police say the Ibrahim family is not cooperating with investigations into another drive-by shooting last night near their family home in Sydney's west.
A house next door to the Merrylands home was peppered with bullets about 8:30pm (AEST).
A 42-year-old woman and her seven-year-old son inside the house at the time escaped injury.
It is the fourth shooting involving the family of Kings Cross nightclub identity John Ibrahim so far this year.
His older brother, former bikie leader Sam Ibrahim, was shot in the legs outside the neighbouring house during a drive-by attack in January.
Superintendent Brett McFadden says police are investigating whether the Ibrahim family owns the house targeted last night, but the family is not cooperating.
"The obvious concern is the proximity of the premises to the neighbouring property, which has been correctly identified by the media previously as being an Ibrahim family home," Superintendent McFadden said.
"The proximity of this home and the incident last night is a natural concern.
"The people that are involved in this, whether they be victims or otherwise, are often silent. They fail to share the information that may assist us.
"The key message here is in order to solve complex, very challenging and very difficult issues the police must work with the community and not in isolation.


Goldfinger strip club closes for good after early morning shooting

Posted On 22:25 0 comments

early morning shooting at the Goldfinger Gentleman's Club that sent four people to the hospital, two with gunshot wounds, has led the owner to close the strip club for good.

Leonard Del Percio, who has owned the strip club since 2007, said that he has had enough. The club did not open its doors Thursday night.

The shooting hours earlier is the latest in a string of violent incidents at the suburban Riviera Beach club.

"It's just not working," Del Percio said. "I've given up on the location."

In August 2009, a woman stabbed her husband in the parking lot over a cash dispute. In December 2009, Ricardo Dumas, 26, was shot several times, and Himberson Altidor, 29, was shot once in his left calf after an argument in the club's parking lot.

One of the club's security guards killed Reicko R. Jones, 27, in August after two groups of men had been fighting inside the club. After they were removed by a staffer, Jones began shooting at one of the groups before he was killed by the guard. A 23-year-old man was shot in the abdomen and found in the club's bathroom in May 2010.

Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputies were again called to club at 8340 Resource Drive at 3:40 a.m Thursday.

Someone drove by the front of the club and shot "numerous rounds" into it, said sheriff's office spokeswoman Teri Barbera said.

Del Percio, who was not at the club at the time, said that a customer was asked to leave, and after resisting, he left. Soon after, shots were fired, he said.

Two men where hit by gunfire - one in the foot, one in the calf. Two women were struck by flying glass. All four were taken to St. Mary's Medical Center with injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening, Barbera said.

Barbera said sheriff's investigators believe the shooter was in the back seat of a small white car.

 


RAIDERS made off with more than €100,000 after they kidnapped the son of a postmaster.

Posted On 05:41 0 comments



The parents of Tommy Kelliher from Newcastle West, Co Limerick, were abroad at a wedding when their 25-year-old son was taken at gunpoint just before he opened the family-run post office yesterday morning. He was later released unharmed.

The post office is one of the biggest sub-offices in the country and covers a large catchment area.

Last night, Tommy Kelliher Snr told of his relief that his eldest son was unharmed as he made arrangements to fly home.

Speaking to the Irish Independent from Spain, Mr Kelliher said he knew very little about the tiger kidnapping.

"He's fine. He is all right -- that is the main thing. He has been through an awful ordeal," Mr Kelliher said.

"I'm getting a flight now. You probably know as much as me. He's safe -- that's all I know," he said.

The investigation into the brazen raid in west Limerick is continuing and gardai have already recovered vital evidence.

Officers were last night continuing to speak to Tommy Kelliher after he was discovered in the boot of his father's black BMW in the Templegreen housing estate yesterday afternoon.

The drama unfolded yesterday morning as the young man went to his barber shop business -- located at the rear of the post office -- in the Market Yard, Newcastle West around 8.30am.

At the rear of the premises, Tommy was confronted by a man wearing a balaclava and armed with a handgun.

Officers believe his father's 2009 Limerick-registered vehicle was then used to transport him away from the town centre.

While Tommy was held, a female staff member in the post office was ordered to gather as much cash as she could and bring it to a wooded area between Carrigkerry and Athea in west Limerick between 11am and noon.

It is understood that €105,000 was handed over and at 4pm, Tommy was discovered unharmed in the boot of his father's car in the Templegreen housing estate in Newcastle West.

Unusually for such a crime, the car was not burnt out and investigating officers were forensically examining the vehicle in a bid to recover vital clues.

Officers are also attempting to identify where the victim was taken during the ordeal.


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