A HELLS Angels associate jailed over a
terrifying Adelaide home invasion, in which a rival's young son
was shot, has lost an appeal against his convictions.
ARRON James Cluse, 24, was jailed for at least
five years in May after a judge found him guilty of aggravated
serious criminal trespass and two aggravated counts of
endangering life in September 2011.
The then prominent Finks
bikie, Mark Sandery, who lived at the targeted house with his
partner and four sons, was out when windows were smashed, the
front door was kicked in and his son, 11, was shot twice in the
The judge found Cluse was
one of those who smashed windows, finding him guilty on the
basis he was part of a joint enterprise aimed at striking fear
into the occupants.
On Tuesday, the SA Court of
Criminal Appeal dismissed Cluse's challenge.
The appeal included grounds
relating to the admissibility of evidence given by a detective
from the Crime Gangs Task Force on motorcycle club culture and
The court found it was not
opinion evidence but knowledge gleaned from long observation and
study, and was properly admitted.
But it also found that
evidence given of specific instances of violence between
motorcycle gangs, learnt from secondary sources, was
inadmissible and it had been an error of law to admit it.
However, this did not cause
a substantial miscarriage of justice because the use made of the
evidence was limited and the case against Cluse would have been
no weaker without it.