Taskforce Maxima downsizing causes alarm as
bikies re-emerge in club colours
Sunday Mail (Qld)
QUEENSLAND’S anti-bikie taskforce has been stripped of more
than two dozen police in a move that has alarmed and mystified crimefighters.
Maxima was downsized to 85 members over the Christmas break and bikie gangs have
brazenly re-emerged in club colours on the Gold Coast – at the Broadbeach dining
precinct where violent clashes by gangs in 2013 led to the police crackdown.
Gangs have also reappeared in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley.
Member for Surfers Paradise John-Paul Langbroek said police
could offer no explanation for the wind back. It was “absurd and dangerous”.
New figures obtained exclusively by
Sunday Mail shows the blitz on outlaw bikie gangs has been a major
success with the arrest of 2573 offenders on 8582 charges, including murder and
attempted murder, grievous bodily harm, torture, extortion, kidnapping and drug
trafficking, especially ice.
The disruption of the criminal gangs has led to a dramatic
reduction in street violence, house breaking and car theft, and has prompted
legendary crimebuster Bob Bottom to declare Maxima the most successful police
operation in Australian history.
A Maxima spokesman said despite the cutbacks the taskforce was
still making great strides against criminal gangs.
Mr Langbroek said he had disturbing reports from the
Broadbeach Alliance that outlaw bikies had been spotted wearing their club
The alliance confirmed the sightings but declined to comment,
instead planning a report to Gold Coast City Council.
Mr Bottom warned of possible political interference leading up
to the release next month of a secret review of anti-bikie laws by a panel
chaired by retired Supreme Court judge Alan Wilson.
The submissions have not been made public, a spokesman for
Justice Minister Yvette D’Ath said.
Mr Bottom said: “Any downgrading of taskforce Maxima raises
serious question marks relating to an obvious political move to dismantle
Queensland’s highly successful law enforcement effort in tackling bikie gangs.”