The Rise of Middle Eastern Crime in Australia
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I BELIEVE that the rise of Middle Eastern organised crime in Sydney will
have an ...
December 20th, 2005 10:16 PM
The Rise of Middle Eastern Crime in Australia
The Rise of Middle Eastern Crime in Australia
I BELIEVE that the rise of Middle Eastern organised crime in Sydney will
have an impact on society unlike anything we have ever seen.
In the early 1980s, as a young detective, I was attached to the Drug Squad
at the old CIB. I remember executing a search warrant at Croydon, where we
found nearly a pound of heroin. I know that now sounds very familiar;
however, what set this heroin apart was that it was Beaker Valley Heroin,
markedly different from any heroin I had seen. Number Four heroin from the
golden triangle of South-East Asia is nearly always off-white, almost pure
diamorphine. This heroin was almost brown.
But more remarkable were the occupants of the house. They were very recent
arrivals from Lebanon, and from the moment we entered the premises, we
wrestled and fought with the male occupants, were abused and spat at by
the women and children, and our search took five times longer because of
the impediments placed before us by the occupants, including the women
hiding heroin in baby nappies and on themselves and refusing to be
searched by policewomen because of religious beliefs. We had never
encountered these problems before.
As was the case in those days, we arrested every adult and teenager who
had hampered our search. When it came to court, they were represented by
Legal Aid, of course, who claimed that these people were innocent of the
minor charges of public disorder and hindering police, because they were
recent arrivals from a country where people have an historical hatred
towards police, and that they also had poor communications skills and that
the police had not executed the warrant in a manner that was acceptable to
the Muslim occupants.
The magistrate, well known to police as one who convicted fewer than one
in ten offenders brought before him during his term at Burwood local
court, threw the matter out, siding with the occupants and condemning the
police. I remember thinking, thank heavens we don't run into many Lebanese
In 1994 I was stationed at Redfern. A well known Lebanese family who lived
not far from the old Redfern Police Academy were terrorising the locals
with random assaults, drug dealing, robberies and violent anti-social
behaviour. When some young policeman from Redfern told me about them,
curiosity got the better of me and I asked them to show me the street they
lived in. Despite the misgivings of the young policeman, I eventually saw
this family and the presence they had in the immediate area. As we drove
away in our marked police car, a half-brick bounced on the roof of the
vehicle. The driver kept going.
I said, "What are you doing, they've just hit the car with a house brick!"
The young constable said, "Oh, they always do that when we drive past."
The police were either too scared or too lazy to do anything about it. The
damage bill on police cars became costly and these street terrorists grew
stronger and the police became purely defensive. You see, the Police Royal
Commission was about to start and the police retreated inside themselves
knowing that the judicial system considered them easy targets. The police
did not want to get hurt or attract Internal Affairs complaints.
Call me stupid, call me a dinosaur, but I made sure that day that at least
one person in the group that threw the brick was arrested. I began by
approaching the group just as that magistrate had lectured me and the
other police involved in the Croydon search warrant. I simply asked who
threw the brick. I was greeted with abuse and threats. I then reverted to
the old ways of policing. I grabbed the nearest male and convinced him
that it was he who had thrown the brick. His brave mates did nothing. By
the time we arrived at the police station, this young fool had become
compliant, apologetic and so afraid that he kept crying.
You may not agree with what I did, but I paraded this goose around the
police station for all the young police to see what they had become
frightened of. For some months after that, police routinely rounded up the
family whenever it was warranted.
However, some years later, with a change of Police Commander and the
advent of duty officers under Peter Ryan, the family got back on top and
within months had murdered a young Australian man who had wandered into
their area drunk. They had set up a caravan where they sold drugs
twenty-four hours a day. They tied up half the police station with
Internal Affairs complaints ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous,
but under Peter Ryan, these complaints were always treated seriously.
In effect, this family had taken control of Redfern. Senior police did
their best to limit police action against them, fearing an avalanche of IA
complaints that would count against the Commander at Peter Ryan's next Op
I hope the examples I have just used don't give the impression that I am a
racist or a bully. The point I want to make from the start is that
policing has never been rocket science. It is about human dynamics, street
psychology, experience, a little bit of theatre and a substantial quantity
of common sense. Sure, forensics and the advances of DNA, rapid
fingerprint identification and electronic eavesdropping have taken
policing to a new level of sophistication, but ultimately, when an
offender is identified by whatever means, scientific or otherwise, it all
comes down to the interaction between the investigator and the offender
during the arrest and interview process. Violent and abusive offenders do
not respect the law or those who enforce it. But they do respect the
old-style cop who doesn't take a backward step and can't be intimidated.
When they encounter cops like that, they fold quickly - there is rarely
much behind the veneer of bravado.
In 1996 with the arrival of Peter Ryan, and the continued public
humiliation of the New South Wales Police through the Wood Royal
Commission, a chain of events began that have affected the police so
deeply and so completely that, as far as ensuring community safety is
concerned, I fear it will take at least a generation to regain the lost
IT WAS ABOUT 1995 to 1996 that the emergence of Middle Eastern crime
groups was first observed in New South Wales. Before then they had been
largely known for individual acts of anti-social behaviour and loose
family structures involved in heroin importation and supply as well as
motor vehicle theft and conversion. The one crime that did appear
organised before this period was insurance fraud, usually motor vehicle
accidents and arson. Because these crimes were largely victimless, they
were dealt with by insurance companies and police involvement was limited.
But from these insurance scams, a generation of young criminals emerged to
become engaged in more sophisticated crimes, such as extortion, armed
robbery, organised narcotics importation and supply, gun running,
organised factory and warehouse break-ins, car theft and conversion on a
massive scale including the exporting of stolen luxury vehicles to Lebanon
and other Middle Eastern countries.
As the police began to gather and act on intelligence on these emerging
Middle Eastern gangs the first of the series of events took place. The New
South Wales Police was restructured under Peter Ryan. Crime Intelligence,
the eyes and ears of all police forces throughout the world, was
dismantled overnight and a British-style intelligence unit was created.
The formation of this unit and its functions has been best described by Dr
Richard Basham - as a library stocking outdated books. The new Crime
Intelligence and Information Section became completely reactive. It
received crime intelligence from the field and stored it. Almost no
relevant intelligence was ever dispensed to operational police from 1997
until I left in 2002. It was a disgrace.
One of the fundamental problems that arose out of the new intelligence
structure was that it no longer had a field capacity or a target
development capacity. With the old BCI there were field teams that were
assigned to look into emerging trends. Vietnamese, Romanian and Hong Kong
Chinese groups were all targeted after intelligence grew on their
activities. When the alarm bells went off over growing intelligence
concerns about a new or current crime group, covert operations were
When the Middle Eastern crime groups emerged in the mid-to-late 1990s no
alarms were set off. The Crime Intelligence unit was asleep. I know
personally that operational police in south-west Sydney compiled enormous
amounts of good intelligence on the formation of Lebanese groups such as
the Telopea Street Boys and others in the Campsie, Lakemba, Fairfield and
Punchbowl areas. The inactivity could not have been because the
intelligence reports weren't interesting, because I have read many of them
and from a policing perspective they were damning. Many of the offenders
that you now see in major criminal trials or serving lengthy sentences in
prison were identified back then.
But even more frustrating for operational police were the activities of
this ethnic crime group, activities that set it apart from almost all
others bar the Cabramatta 5T. The Lebanese groups were ruthless, extremely
violent, and they intimidated not only innocent witnesses, but even the
police that attempted to arrest them. As these crime groups encountered
less resistance in terms of police operations and enforcement, their power
grew not only within their own communities, but also all around Sydney -
except in Cabramatta, where their fear of the South-East Asian crime
groups limited their forays. But the rest of Sydney became easy pickings.
The second in the series of events began to take shape with Peter Ryan's
executive leadership team. Under Ryan's nose they began to carve up the
New South Wales Police and form little kingdoms where a senior police
officer ruled almost untouched by outside influence. They then appointed
their own commanders in the police stations. Almost all of them had little
or no street experience; but they in turn brought along their friends as
duty officers, similarly inexperienced. Some of the experience these
police counted on their resumes included stints at Human Resources, the
Academy, the Police Band in one case, the various cubby-holes in Police
Headquarters, almost no operational policing experience - yet they were
tasked to lead. Never has the expression "the blind leading the blind"
been more appropriate.
The impact that this leadership team had on day-to-day operational
policing was disastrous. In many of the key areas that were experiencing
rapid rises in Middle Eastern crime, these new leaders became more
concerned with relations between the police and ethnic minorities than
with emerging violent crime. The power and influence of the local
religious and minority leaders cannot be overstated. Police began to use
selective law enforcement. They selected targets that were unlikely to use
their ethnic background and cultural beliefs to hinder police
investigations or arrests. It was mostly Anglo-Saxons and Asians that were
the targets, because they were under-represented by religious leaders and
the media. They were soft targets.
AN EXAMPLE of the confrontations police nearly always experienced in
Muslim-dominated areas when confronting even the most minor of crimes is
an incident that occurred in 2001 in Auburn. Two uniformed officers
stopped a motor vehicle containing three well known male offenders of
Middle Eastern origin, on credible information via the police radio that
indicated that the occupants of the vehicle had been involved in a series
of break-and-enters. What occurred during the next few hours can only be
described as frightening.
When searching the vehicle and finding stolen property from the
break-and-enter, the police were physically threatened by the three
occupants of the car, including references to tracking down where the
officers lived, killing them and "****ing your girlfriends". The two
officers were intimidated to the point of retreating to their police car
and calling for urgent assistance. When police back-up arrived, the three
occupants called their associates via their mobile phones, which
incidentally is the Middle Eastern radio network used to communicate
amongst gangs. Within minutes as many as twenty associates arrived as well
as another forty or so from the street where they had been stopped. As
further police cars arrived, the Middle Eastern males became even more
aggressive, throwing punches at police, pushing police over onto the
ground, threatening them with violence and damaging police vehicles.
When the duty officer arrived, he immediately ordered all police back into
their vehicles and they retreated from the scene. The stolen property was
not recovered. No offender was arrested for assaulting police or damaging
But the humiliation did not end there. The group of Middle Eastern males
then drove to the police station, where they intimidated the station
staff, damaged property and virtually held a suburban police station
hostage. The police were powerless. The duty officer ordered police not to
confront the offenders but to call for back-up from nearby stations.
Eventually the offenders left of their own volition. No action was taken
In the minds of the local population, the police were cowards and the
message was, Lebs rule the streets. For a number of days, nothing was done
to rectify this total breakdown of law and order. To the senior police in
the area, it was more important to give the impression that local ethnic
relations were never better. It was also important to Peter Ryan that no
bad news stories appeared that may have given the impression that crime in
any area was out of control. Had these hoodlums been arrested they would
have filed IA complaints immediately via their Legal Aid lawyers and
community leaders. To senior police, this was a cause for concern at the
next Op Crime Review.
So the incident was covered up until a few local veteran detectives found
out about it and decided to act. They went quietly to the addresses of the
three main offenders early one morning and took them away with a minimum
of fuss and charged them. Some order was restored, but not nearly enough.
By avoiding confrontations with these thugs, the police gave away the
streets in many of these areas in south-western Sydney. By putting in
place inexperienced senior police who had never copped the odd punch in
the mouth or broken nose in the line of duty, the police force hung the
community and the local police out to dry. Most of these duty officers had
retreated to non-operational areas early in their careers because they
couldn't stomach the risks of front-line policing. Yet they put their
hands up to take vital operational roles because the positions are highly
paid - duty officers receive about $30,000 to $40,000 a year more than a
detective sergeant, which is ludicrous.
When I say that this type of policing was condoned and encouraged across
wide areas of New South Wales, I am not exaggerating. The problems in
south-western Sydney are a direct result of covering up criminality
because it went against the script that Peter Ryan and his executive had
continually pushed in the media, day after day after day - that crime was
on the decrease and Peter Ryan was the world's best police commissioner.
In hundreds upon hundreds of incidents police have backed down to Middle
Eastern thugs and taken no action and allowed incidents to go unpunished.
Again I stress the unbelievable influence that local politicians and
religious leaders played in covering up the real state of play in the
The third event was the reforming of Criminal Investigations into a
centrally controlled body called Crime Agencies. All the specialist crime
squads were done away with: Arson, Armed Robbery, Drugs, Organised Crime,
Special Breaking, Consorting, Vice, Gaming, Motor Vehicle Theft were
wrapped up into one-size-fits-all. Ryan once boasted that by the time he
finished retraining the New South Wales Police, constables could
investigate a traffic accident in the morning and a homicide in the
afternoon, a statement that summed up his Alice-in-Wonderland policing
theories. All the expertise and experience evaporated overnight.
It was as if the public hospitals had suddenly lost every surgeon and had
GPs perform major surgery. No matter how bright and dedicated these GPs
were, they would simply not have the expertise, the training and the
experience to take over. It would be a disaster. Well, that is what
happened to criminal investigation in this state. Crime Agencies was an
unmitigated disaster. Yet those who designed and ran this farce have gone
on to highly paid government jobs.
The final straw for the New South Wales Police was the OCR - Op Crime
Review, which Peter Ryan and his executive team came up with. It was
loosely based on the groundbreaking Compstat program of the New York
Police Department, the brainchild of Commissioner William Bratton. The
difference between Ryan's OCR and the NYPD Compstat was that the NYPD
model covered everything on the criminal waterfront. The Ryan-inspired OCR
had just six crimes. And those six included domestic violence, random
breath testing, theft, robbery, assaults and motor vehicle theft - no
drugs, organised crime, firearms, shootings, attempted murders, homicides.
The crimes that instil fear into the average citizen were ignored, and
with plenty of innovative answers as to why. The OCR focused police
attention on a limited number of crimes and allowed far more serious and
deadly crimes to get out of control.
SO WITH a police force on the verge of bankruptcy, the Middle Eastern
crime problem was an explosion waiting to go off. I had observed the
beginnings of Asian organised crime whilst at the Drug Squad and later at
the National Crime Authority where I worked on two task forces, one of
which was on Chinese organised crime. When I look back on the influence of
Chinese organised crime in Australia, I see a gradual but sustained trend,
not one of high peaks in terms of activity or incidents, but one of a well
planned criminal enterprise that attracts little attention. It's there but
you can't always see it.
It probably took twenty years for the Chinese to become a dominant force
in crime in this city. But Middle Eastern crime has taken less than ten
years. So pervasive is their influence on organised crime that rival
ethnic groups, with the exception of the Asian gangs, have been squeezed
out or made extinct. The only other crime group to have survived intact
are the bikies, although the bikies these days have legitimised many of
their operations and now make as much money from legal means as they do
illegally. In many ways they have adopted US Mafia methods of legitimate
businesses shrouding their illegal operations.
With no organised crime function, no gang unit except for the South-East
Asian Strike Force, the New South Wales Police turned against every
convention known to Western policing in dealing with organised crime
groups. In effect the Lebanese crime gangs were handed the keys to Sydney.
The most influential of the Middle Eastern crime groups are the Muslim
males of Telopea Street, Bankstown, known as the Telopea Street Boys. They
and their associates have been involved in numerous murders over the past
five years, many of them unprovoked fatal attacks on young Australian men
for no other reason than that they are "Skips", as they call Australians.
They have been involved in all manner of crime on a scale we have never
seen before. Ram-raids on expensive stores in the city are epidemic. The
theft of expensive motor vehicles known as car-jacking is increasing at an
alarming rate. This crime involves gangs finding a luxury motor vehicle
parked outside a restaurant or hotel and watching until the occupants
return to drive home. The car is followed, the victims assaulted at
gunpoint, and the vehicle stolen. The vehicles are always around or above
the $100,000 mark and are believed to be taken to warehouses before being
shipped interstate or to the Middle East.
Extortion on inner-city nightclubs is largely unreported because of the
dire consequences of owners reporting these incidents to police. When I
worked at City Central Detectives just before I retired, I was involved in
the initial investigation of one brave nightclub owner in the inner city
who did report this crime. The Lebanese criminals were arrested after a
sting operation. However, I believe that after many violent threats the
owner sold up and now lives interstate. He once had a thriving business
that for a nightclub ran a reputable service, keeping out drugs,
maintaining safety for patrons and co-operating with the police.
The tactics used by the gang were simple. A large number of Middle Eastern
males would enter the club, upwards of twenty at a time. They would
outnumber the security staff and begin assaulting Australian male patrons,
sometimes stabbing them. The incident would be over in minutes and the
gang members would be long gone before police arrived. A few days later,
senior members of the gang, well dressed and business-like, would approach
the club owners and offer to provide protection from similar incidents for
around $2000 to $3000 a week. Many of the owners paid up and considered it
a necessary expense in keeping their business viable. If they didn't pay
up, or contacted the police, the gangs would wait some weeks, even months,
before returning to the nightclub and extracting a terrible revenge on the
owners, who would pay up or leave. There is compelling intelligence that
in one well-known entertainment precinct in the city, nearly all the bars,
nightclubs and hotels pay protection money to Middle Eastern crime gangs.
The extent to which Middle Eastern crime gangs have moved into the drug
market is breathtaking. They are now the main suppliers of cocaine in this
city and are now developing markets in south-eastern Queensland and
Victoria. They are major suppliers of heroin in and around the inner city,
south-western Sydney and western Sydney.
What sets the Middle Eastern gangs apart from all other gangs is their
propensity to use violence at any time and for any reason. I thought I
would never see the level and type of violence that I saw with the
South-East Asian gangs in Cabramatta, particularly the 5T, the Four Aces
and Madonna's Mob, which were a breakaway from the old 5T.But the
violence, although horrific, was almost always local, that is within the
Cabramatta area and almost always against fellow Asians. As a result of
that locally based violent crime it was relatively easy to identify the
culprits and break them up once we were given the resources after the
police revolt of 1999 - 2000.
The Middle Eastern cycle of violence is not local. It can occur on the
central coast, around Cronulla, Bondi, Darling Harbour, Five Dock,
Redfern, Paddington, anywhere in Sydney. Unlike their Vietnamese
counterparts, they roam the city and are not confined to either Cabramatta
or Chinatown. And even more alarming is that the violence is directed
mainly against young Australian men and women. There is a clear and
definite link between violent attacks on our young men and women being
racial as well as criminal. Quite often when taking statements from young
men attacked by groups of Lebanese males around Darling Harbour, a common
theme has been the racially motivated violence against the victims simply
because they are Australian.
I wonder whether the inventors of the racial hatred laws introduced during
the golden years of multiculturalism ever took into account that we, the
silent majority, would be the target of racial violence and hatred. I
don't remember any charges being laid in conjunction with the gang rapes
of south-western Sydney in 2001, where race was clearly an issue and race
was used to humiliate the victims. But then, unbelievably, a
publicly-funded document produced by the Anti-Discrimination Board called
"The Race for Headlines" was circulated, and it sought not only to cover
up race as a motive for the rapes, but to criticise any accurate media
reporting on this matter as racially biased. It worries many operational
police that organisations like the Anti-Discrimination Board, the Privacy
Council and the Civil Liberties Council have become unaccountable and push
agendas that don't represent the values that this great country was built
MANY OF YOU would have heard of the horrific problems in France with the
outbreak of unprecedented crimes amongst an estimated five million Muslim
immigrants. Middle Eastern males now make up 45,000 of the 90,000 inmates
in French prisons. There are no-go areas in Paris for police and citizens
alike. The rule of law has broken down so badly that when police went to
one of these areas recently to round up three Islamic terrorists, they
went in armoured vehicles, with heavy weaponry and over 1000 armed
officers, just to arrest a few suspects. Why did it need such numbers?
Because the threat of terrorist reprisal was minimal compared to the
anticipated revolt by thousands of Middle Eastern and North African
residents who have no respect for the rule of law in France and consider
intrusions by police and authority a declaration of war.
The problems in Paris in Muslim communities are being replicated here in
Sydney at an alarming rate. Paris has seen an explosion of rapes committed
by Middle Eastern males on French women in the past fifteen years. The
rapes are almost identical to those in Sydney. They are not only committed
for sexual gratification but also with deep racial undertones along with
threats of violence and retribution. What is more alarming is the
identical reaction by some sections of the media and criminologists in
France of downplaying the significance of race as an issue and even
ganging up on those people who try to draw attention to the widening gulf
between Middle Eastern youth and the rest of French society.
That is what we are seeing here. The usual suspects come out of their
institutions and libraries to downplay and even cover up the growing
problem of Middle Eastern crime. Why? My opinion, for what it's worth, is
that these same social engineers have attempted to redefine our society.
They have experimented with all manner of institutions, from prisons to
mental institutions and recently to policing.
Some of the problems we now see with policing are the result of Peter
Ryan's dream of restructuring and retraining police. The Police Academy
was changed from a police training college into a university teaching
social sciences and very little else. Constantly I would see young police
emerge from the academy with a view that as police officers they were
counsellors, psychologists, marriage guidance experts, social workers and
advocates for social change but with almost no skills in street policing.
Their training had placed not only them in danger, but also their
workmates and the community.
Policing is about enforcing the rule of law. It has never been about
analysing every offender for the root causes of crime. That is not our
job. The police enforce the law and protect the community regardless of
race, colour or religion. What we have seen in south-west Sydney is ethnic
communities being policed selectively. The implications for this are
frightening when you look at Paris. They had selective policing of a
particular community, which as a result is now out of control.
In February 2001 when I appeared before the Cabramatta inquiry, I gave
evidence which at the time was controversial and attracted the usual
claque of ratbags, lunatics from the ABC and their associates at the
Sydney Morning Herald as well as that fruit loop Mike Carlton from 2UE. I
said that this city is going to be torn apart by gang warfare the likes of
which we have never seen before. In 2003 I was finally proven right, but I
take no comfort from that. However, the criticism I received was
unprecedented. I was a nutter, a liar, a racist, a disgruntled detective -
but I was right. The critics still refuse to concede that we have a
problem. They are still clinging to the multicultural theme. To highlight
the problems with Middle Eastern communities in this city is to threaten
to tear down the multicultural facade.
The amount of money spent on the multicultural industry beggars belief. It
is a lucrative and sustainable position for many. Governments pay huge
money to anything that bears the word multicultural. Indeed the police
department, like other government departments, spends vast amounts on
multicultural issues, multicultural jobs, multicultural consultancies,
education packages, legal advice, public relations and the rest. Having
expended large amounts of money on multiculturalism, they are hardly
likely to criticise it. Those that feed off multiculturalism are not
likely to question it.
WHEN I GAVE evidence to the Cabramatta inquiry, I risked my career and my
safety in coming forward. I did it because I had sworn an oath to protect
the community I served. That community was Cabramatta. Cabramatta is made
up almost entirely of residents born outside this country, mostly
South-East Asians, and their children. But when I went forward and exposed
the shame of Cabramatta, the residents were not Asians in my eyes, but
Australians no matter where they came from. It was my duty to speak up for
them and to protect them. Race was never an issue. I have received many
awards in my police career but the ones I hold dearest are those I
received from the Cabramatta community.
One old man who had spent seven years in refugee camps in South-East Asia
before coming to Australia said the day he landed in Australia was like
dying and coming to heaven. Cabramatta was a community of ordinary people
like that old man, who recognised the problems of drugs and organised
crime in their community and spoke up and agitated for change. It was a
slightly built Vietnamese man named Thung Ngo who led the charge on behalf
of a community that had had enough of crime and forced a parliamentary
inquiry into Cabramatta which ultimately saved their community from
destruction. Not once during that inquiry did I hear any member of the
Cabramatta community - apart from the Anglo-Saxon local member - complain
that they were being racially discriminated against because of the inquiry
or its aftermath. They wanted change, they wanted a safe law-abiding
community. It was my duty to do everything I could to honour my pledge to
protect and to serve.
But I have not heard anything like that from the Middle Eastern community.
Initially the gang rapes were the fault of Australian culture, according
to one religious leader in the south-west. I note that he has now softened
his stance and is calling for change among Middle Eastern youth. But they
are just words; there seem to be no Thung Ngos among them.
What is it that draws such defence for this community from certain
sections of the media? Why didn't they join in to defend the Asian
community during the fallout from the Cabramatta inquiry? And where are
these apologists when it comes to the plight of our first Australians, our
indigenous peoples? Their cause is not trendy enough, not global like the
refugee or Islamic issues. Yet one of the most depressing sights that has
confronted me as a policeman is the shame of Redfern. I first saw
Everleigh Street some twenty-two years ago, and nothing has changed since.
The atmosphere of sheer hopelessness and desperation still hangs around
the neck of every young Aborigine who lives in those ghettos, yet they
hardly ever rate a mention.
The Middle Eastern crime groups and their associates number in the
thousands, not the hundreds as the government and senior police would have
you believe. It is the biggest crime problem we have ever faced, and it is
growing. Hardly a day goes past without some violent crime involving a
"male of Middle Eastern appearance", though I see lately that description
is watered down now to include "and / or Mediterranean appearance". To an
operational policeman, there is a noticeable difference between an Italian
and a Lebanese male.
That these groups of males can roam a city and assault, rob and intimidate
at will can no longer be denied or excused. You need only to look at Paris
and other European countries that have had mass immigration from Middle
Eastern countries to see the sort of problems we can expect in years to
come. My prediction is that within ten years, Middle Eastern crime groups
will spread rapidly across Australia as they seek to expand their
enterprises. There will be no-go areas in south-western Sydney, just like
Only recently I have seen quotes from senior police and retired police who
claim that race is not the issue in organised crime. Those statements are
stupid and dangerous. Organised crime groups with the exception of the
bikies are almost always ethnically based - any experienced detective will
tell you that. The days of Anglo-Saxon gangs are almost gone, with the
exception of one or two local beach gangs.
I also predict that there will be a dramatic rise in gang shootings as
rival gangs compete for turf and business. This will be done with almost
complete disregard for police attention, as they are well aware that the
New South Wales Police has to be rebuilt from the ground up. We have seen
in the past three years the phenomenon of drive-by shootings, Los
Angeles-style. Not only are the increasing incidents a major cause of
concern, but also the use of automatic weapons that spray hundreds of
rounds at their targets. This is virtually unprecedented in this country.
IN MANY WAYS, what we are seeing is the copying of Los Angeles gangs: the
Crips, the Bloods and others. The motor vehicles, the music, the dress
codes, the haircuts, the weaponry and the attitudes towards authority are
almost identical. These gangs in Los Angeles have been around for nearly
thirty years and a culture has grown around them. The culture surrounding
the Middle Eastern gangs is still in its infancy but the transition is not
When William Bratton, the most innovative police commissioner of modern
times, took over as Los Angeles Police Chief recently, he declared the
gang problems there a national security problem, so serious that it was
beyond the resources of the state of California. There is a lesson for us
there, but we have to learn quickly, or this problem will overtake us.
The blame for the rise of the gangs in Los Angeles is being spread around
- politicians who refused to acknowledge that it was more than just an
ethnic brotherhood searching for their roots; police inaction because of
political constraints as well as incompetence; the civil liberties
movement particularly among the California superior courts that refused
for decades to use lengthy sentences as a deterrent to ethnic-based crime
on the basis that it discriminated against minority groups. Whoever is to
blame is now irrelevant, but they have left a terrible legacy for the
young generations of citizens of Los Angeles who have to run the gauntlet
of drug-crazed gangsters in the suburbs engaging in deadly shoot-outs and
drive-bys nearly every day.
The similarities between the situation here, with the denial by the
government of the extent and the implications of Middle Eastern crime, and
the early situation in Los Angeles is frightening. What we saw with
Cabramatta was the covering up of a major problem by this government, who
only acted when the game was up. It's all about denial. If they can get
away with covering up it saves them the worry of making hard decisions and
spending money on fixing problems that have been allowed to fester for
years. The rail system that Michael Costa now has to fix is yet another
There is no investment in the future. It is about looking good day by day.
The Peter Ryan-style policing of day-to-day media spin is still present.
No one seems to have the courage to say that this is a problem that we
need to fix before it gets worse. The time when the Middle Eastern problem
really takes root in this city, the point from which there is no return,
just like Los Angeles, is but a few years away. The leaders of our
government probably hope this will be another government's fault and that
they won't be around to see their legacy. Maybe we should all buy a
property in southern New Zealand.
If the biggest threat to our society is not addressed honestly and
effectively within the next two or three years it will take drastic action
and enormous resources to bring it under control - if that is even
possible. The action we can take now and the resources needed are a
fraction of what it may cost in the future. The potential cost in human
terms is unimaginable.
There is also the serious possibility that some of these Middle Eastern
youth that are engaged in organised crime and have no regard for our
values and way of life may go a step further and engage in terrorist acts
against Australia. The ingredients are there already. It is but a small
step from urban terrorism to religious and political terrorism, as we have
seen with groups such as the IRA, where organised crime often became
interwoven with terrorism.
I do not want to paint a picture of gloom, but as a policeman I have seen
the destruction that gangs can wreak on innocent citizens who only want to
live their lives in peace. I just hope we can trust the people in
government and the police to ensure that we don't lose the values and the
rights we have received from past generations.
It is fitting that one day after Remembrance Day, when we look to what was
handed to us by the Second World War generation, probably the most
extraordinary generation of Australians in our short history, we should
ask ourselves: Are we going to be remembered for handing a similar legacy
to our children and grandchildren, or are we going to be remembered as the
generation that did nothing about the scourge of gang violence and simply
passed it on to them?
Tim Priest, a retired detective, gave this talk on
November 12 to a Quadrant dinner in Sydney.
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
December 20th, 2005 10:19 PM
ive heard about this kind of thing and the Riots going one right now between the middle eastern people and the Aussies supposed to be out of control with the cops running scared
December 20th, 2005 11:34 PM
This stuff quickly gets out of control - it obviously already has and without seriously heavy efforts, will continue to grow. Like as not they have something akin to MS-13 type gang strengths.
It will not take conventional policing to control - more, it will take SWAT type approaches and even military assistance - it is not crime in the normal sense - it is an ethnic take-over of society thru lawlessness, intimidation and probably murder - to whatever degree ''they'' see fit to achieve a domination.
Only heavy, very heavy methods will quell such things.
Chris - P95
NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.
"To own a gun and assume that you are armed
is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."
- a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.
December 20th, 2005 11:53 PM
In the not-so-distant past of our own country, violent gangs that terrorized entire cities were eventually controlled by outraged citizens who formed "vigilance committees". Criminals either left town quickly or became part of the local decorations. I wonder if this is the direction Australia is headed?
"I surrounded 'em"- Alvin York
"They're ain't many troubles that a man can't fix with seven hundred dollars and a thirty ought six"- Jeff Cooper
December 21st, 2005 08:22 AM
Well the Aussies are effectively disarmed. How are they going to fight these guys without taking a lot of casualties? We have similar problems developing in the US with gangs and there has been no popular uprising against it. We are too "civilized" for this sort of thing.
Originally Posted by Team American
The police had better step on these criminals fast and hard or they will become an even bigger problem. I know a LEO who was involved in operations against MS13. They were relentless in their pursuits and prescence in known MS13 operating areas. They eventually pushed them out of his squad's operating area. Unfortunately they just moved to greener pastures about 8 miles down the road.
December 21st, 2005 08:46 AM
I read that and I don't know whether to be scared or sick. That is just pathetic, and it seems most of our so called civilized societies are going in that direction. If we don't stary controlling the outlaws we will end up losing everything.......
A slap on the hand just doesn't work, and ignoring the problem will NOT make it go away! (Sigh, mini-rant off)
EOD - Initial success or total failure
December 21st, 2005 12:11 PM
Too true...our society seems to embrace the gang culture through the hip-hop music/NBA thug entertainment industry.
Originally Posted by Scott
Our homegrown gangs seem to be different, though, from these muslim gangs...controlling drug sales turf and killing each other in contained violence areas has kept them "below the radar" for our outrage. Only the occasional innocent victim stirs our anger, but never to the point of "vigilance committee" action. We just get mad and wonder when our government "protectors" are going to put an end to it...after all, we have passed laws against this sort of activity.
Kinda makes you wonder if all "civilized" societies are doomed to rot from within by becoming too soft and dependent on thier hired "wolves" to protect them...after they have pulled the wolves fangs, of course.
"I surrounded 'em"- Alvin York
"They're ain't many troubles that a man can't fix with seven hundred dollars and a thirty ought six"- Jeff Cooper
December 21st, 2005 08:47 PM
The way things are going everything will be run by gangs and they will be tolling the roads and into the neighbor hoods
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