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Bikie shot at clubhouse: court

A REBELS motorcycle club member was shot in the leg and then assaulted at a get-together he believed was to elect new club officials, a court has heard.

Prosecutor Phil McCarthy told the District Court in Brisbane, Mark Allan Ashworth heard a loud bang like a firecracker had been thrown at him as he sat at the bar in the Rebels' Nerang premises on the Gold Coast, on October 9, 2007.

Ashworth turned to see another bike club member holding what looked like a handgun pointed at him.

Mr McCarthy said when Ashworth went to get up, his leg gave way and he was then assaulted by another member of the club who punched him about the head.

Ashworth fell down and he continued to struggle with the second man.

Mr McCarthy said eventually Ashworth was driven to the Gold Coast Hospital for treatment.

He said Ashworth had originally gone to the clubhouse after receiving a text message there would be a vote for president and vice-president that night.

Mr McCarthy said Ashworth had eaten his dinner in the clubhouse before being attacked.

In the District Court, a third man, former Rebels member Jamie John Ciardi, 35, was put on three years probation for his part in the punching assault on Ashworth.

Ciardi pleaded guilty to one count of assault occasioning harm while in company.

His only role was to have encouraged the punching assault on Ashworth by yelling support for the attack.

Mr McCarthy said the Crown wanted to make it clear that Ciardi, who had no previous convictions, was in no way linked to the shooting and had been unaware it was going to happen.

Barrister Tony Kimmins, for Ciardi, said the prosecution had very fairly described his client's role in the events and Ciardi had nothing to do with the shooting.

Mr Kimmins said Ciardi also had no physical part in the other assault and pleaded guilty on the basis he encouraged it with his words.

He said as part of Ciardi's bail he had disassociated himself with the Rebels and had also been forced to relocate to Sydney during his bail period.

Judge Kerry O'Brien said he accepted Ciardi's role in the events was relatively minor and Ciardi had no involvement in the shooting.

After taking the time Ciatrdi spent in custody on remand into account Judge O'Brien sentenced him to three years probation.

Two other men involved in the incident are likely to go to trial at a later date.



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