International members of a notorious
outlaw motorcycle gang have ridden into the south to
help set up the Invercargill and Dunedin probationary
The Southland Times has reported that
the Bandidos Motorcycle Worldwide Club set up chapters
in the south last month.
However, police have played down the
number of members they believe are part of the gang in
The establishment of the two southern
probationary chapters and the presence of an
international and national Bandidos hierarchy at a
"patching" ceremony are being celebrated on the club's
A post says "Bandidos MC New Zealand
are excited about welcoming into our Great Red & Gold
Nation two new probationary chapters".
The post also said photographs on the
website were from last month's patching ceremony for the
"Invercargill and Dunedin Probationary Chapters".
"This party took place at Bandido
Probationary Wally's house, he is the Invercargill
president who lives in Invercargill city which is the
capital city of Southland located at the most southern
end of the South Island of New Zealand with a population
of around 55,000 people."
The post says members from the
Bandidos Australian National and Nomad Chapters attended
the three-day event and presented the new members with
their probate and prospect colours.
Members from the Auckland chapter,
Christchurch probationary chapter, as well as family and
friends who "showed massive support", also attended the
However, police said the number of
Bandido members in the south was not significant. The
southern district organised crime squad head, Detective
Senior Sergeant Malcolm Inglis, said he believed the
gang might be "blowing things up a bit".
There were only about three Australian
members in Invercargill when the probationary chapters
were formed, he said.
The Bandidos had recruited from other
gangs, including former Road Knight members. It was
disappointing another criminal element was now in the
south, Inglis said. "Hopefully they will be sensible and
there will be no gang disputes."
Southern police had made one arrest of
a Bandido associate since the arrival of the gang.
A man in a Bandido T- shirt had been
arrested in Dunedin for serious assault, Inglis said.
The Bandidos southern probationary
chapters follow the establishment of a probationary
chapter in Christchurch, with The Press reporting the
Bandidos patched over members of the Rock Machine
motorcycle club in November.
In 2012, it was reported the Bandidos
were setting up a chapter in South Auckland.