Pictures of Al Qaeda
leader Osama bin Laden were found at
one gang-members home / AP
POLICE have discovered pictures of Osama bin
Laden at a Gold Coast home linked to a
worrying new bikie gang called Soldiers of
Islam, whose members include former Iraqi
Photos of the
fugitive al-Qaeda leader were found recently at
the home of a gang member during a criminal
Soldiers of Islam, also known as Sons of Islam,
is believed to be an offshoot of outlaw bikie
gang the Bandidos, which has a clubhouse at
Mermaid Beach on the Gold Coast.
Sources say the gang, comprising young Muslim
men who sport "SOI'' tattoos, has sprung up on
the Glitter Strip relatively recently.
While only small in membership, the gang is
coming under increasing attention from police
investigating bikie links to crimes involving
drugs, guns and violence.
"They are relatively new on the Gold Coast scene
but seem to be involving themselves in some
scary things,'' a source said.
"They are associated with the Bandidos. Some of
the members are ex-Iraqi soldiers with weapons
training, so it's quite a worry.''
The Courier-Mail understands that apart
from the Bin Laden photos, police did not find
any terrorism-related material at the Soldiers
of Islam member's house.
Middle Eastern gangs, while active in Sydney,
have only recently been making their presence
felt in Queensland and particularly on the Gold
Police have identified bikies from Sydney as
being involved in the drive-by shooting murder
of Gold Coast father-of-two Omega Ruston outside
McDonald's at Burleigh Heads on Australia Day
2008. The case remains unsolved.
One of the Coast's most notorious bikies is
Lebanese-born Yassar Bakir, who joined the
high-profile Finks gang several years ago.
Bakir was last month convicted of importing GBL,
a chemical used to make the powerful drug
"fantasy'', and was jailed for six years.
The trial heard Bakir used violence and threats
to force another man to import the drug into
Australia from China.
Bakir was also charged with the attempted murder
of a former professional rugby player, cage
fighter and Japanese Yakuza bodyguard, who was
pumped with bullets on the Southport Spit in
However, the charges were dropped after the
victim failed to show up to court to testify.
Another Finks bikie of Middle Eastern descent,
Richard Savage, received a suspended sentence in
2007 after admitting to a violent rampage at
Gold Coast Hospital because of delays in his
wife getting haemorrhoid surgery.
The court heard Savage told terrified nurses he
was "the king of the Gold Coast'' and threatened
to get 30 Finks to "trash the hospital until his
wife was operated on''