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Former gang leader Vincent Focarelli denied bail for public safety

Vince Focarelli

Vince Focarelli - former New Boys leader and Comanchero bikie. Source: Sunday Mail (SA)

Alleged former gang leader Vince Focarelli has been denied bail just days before the first anniversary of his son Giovanni's murder in order to keep him and the public safe.

District Court Judge Simon Stretton today refused Focarelli's application for home detention bail.

Judge Stretton noted that there were six incidents involving violence or suspected threats of violence to Focarelli since 2009 and that Focarelli, 37, had been "kept safe by way of custody" over the past 12 months.

He noted that the trial for drug trafficking charges was just a few weeks away and in his view it was not appropriate to grant bail at this time.

Focarelli has been in custody since he was shot alongside his son at Dry Creek in January last year.

Prosecutor Oliver Klotz told the court Focarelli and the public would be at risk if he was released.


"The police's concern is that he will seek to take justice into his own hands if he is released, if he's not, I suppose, found first by those who want harm done to him," Mr Klotz said.

He said the concern was that members of the public "could end up in hospital or in the morgue" if Focarelli was released.

"The court in our submission has an obligation to consider the community's safety."

The first attempt on Focarelli's life was in March 2009 at Blair Athol when he was shot by a man.

Police charged the alleged shooter with attempted murder but the charges were later withdrawn.

The second incident was in February 2010 when an explosive device detonated in a car around the corner from Focarelli's residence at Enfield. The two occupants of the car, linked to the Hells Angels, were killed in the explosion.

In September 2010 a man approached Focarelli in the Sefton Park Foodland and put a gun to his head. The man pulled the trigger but the gun jammed.

The fourth incident was in December 2011 when Focarelli was shot in the upper thigh.

In January last year two shots were fired at a car in the Findon Hotel carpark where Focarelli had been seen earlier that evening.

Two weeks later Focarelli and his son, Giovanni, were shot at Dry Creek and Giovanni was killed.

Focarelli provided no assistance to the police on all of the occasions.




Defence lawyer Heath Barklay said the incidents were in the past and the prosecution was relying on "stale threats".

"There comes a time where the court cannot continue to entertain a submission that there's a threat to Mr Focarelli based on old and dated information," he said.


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