Nomads suspected over attacks on Hells Angels' turf
April 18, 2012
Clashing colours ... the police believe a turf war between the Nomads and the Hells Angels is behind Sydney's latest drive-by shootings. Photo: Colours clash ... police believe
A bikie turf war with a long history is behind the latest outbreak of drive-by shootings in the west.
The series of drive-by shootings that erupted in Sydney's west in the early hours of Tuesday was part of a simmering feud between two rival bikie gangs going back more than a year.
Four of the five premises targeted in the violent attacks yesterday were homes and businesses linked to members of the Hells Angels.
Detectives believe members of the Nomads were responsible. Police have set up Strike Force Kinnarra, comprising members of the Gangs Squad and the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad. Last night the strike force put 100 extra officers on the streets in the hope of preventing reprisal attacks.
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''There has been a brewing conflict between these two groups for some time,'' Assistant Commissioner Mal Lanyon said.
It is understood the violence on Tuesday morning was a reprisal attack after bullet holes were discovered in a home and a Mazda CX-7 at Pemulwuy, in the city's west, on Monday afternoon.
The intended target is believed to have been Sleiman Tajjour, a member of the Nomads and the cousin of Kings Cross identity John Ibrahim.
Police believe the Pemulwuy drive-by attack was on Saturday afternoon but when it was discovered two days later it prompted a swift and brazen response.
Just hours later, around 12.30am Tuesday, shots were fired into a Granville home owned by the family of Mahmoud Dib, a former Bandido member and now a senior Hells Angel.
Over the next three hours four other premises were shot at including two Hells Angels-associated tattoo parlours, Tattoo World at Baulkham Hills and Infamous Ink at Merrylands.
Attacks on tattoo shops linked to rival bikie gangs are seen as ''more personalised'' than firing shots at club houses.
The fourth target was the family home of another senior Hells Angel, Jeffrey Sahyoun. The 26-year-old is in jail after being arrested on firearms offences but three elderly members of his family were in the home when bullets were fired into the kitchen at 2.40am.
A police source told the Herald the tension between the two gangs goes back to at least early 2011, when the Hells Angels started a huge recruitment drive.
In one of the greatest mass defections in the history of the Australian outlaw clubs, the entire Parramatta chapter of the Bandidos, consisting of up to 60 members, defected to the Hells Angels.
The ''patching over'' meant the Hells Angels now boasted more than 100 members in NSW.
At the same time, the Nomads were re-establishing their Parramatta chapter.
Defections and the turf war that has ensued since has brought the groups into conflict before this.
Police believe six drive-by shootings across Sydney's west between October 27 and November 3 last year were tit-for-tat violence between the two gangs.
Two months ago, up to 60 Hells Angels, some in their club colours, walked through Kings Cross in what police believe was a show of strength towards the Nomads, who have links to the security industry in the popular nightclub district.
Senior police said yesterday they would be doing everything in their power to ensure the feud does not intensify.