STRIKE Force Raptor has promised to ‘keep a foot on the throat’ of the region’s bikie gangs, as the state’s elite police unit sets up camp in the Hunter.
On Sunday police announced a full-time Hunter branch of Strike Force Raptor – Raptor North
“Over recent months, there has been a number of public place shootings, arson attacks and overall violent confrontations,” Northern Region commander, Assistant Commissioner Max Mitchell said.
“When you look back at the history of policing, specifically around the Hunter area, the outlaw motorcycle gangs that have operated, have done so for many, many years.
“With our policing efforts we have had some wins, but with those wins they have been able to have a resurgence. With Raptor North this is about keeping our foot on the throat, in making sure that we don’t give them the opportunity of building enterprises within our community.”
The local unit will have 23 team members consisting of investigators, Operations Support Group (OSG) operatives, highway patrol, and intelligence/analytical staff.
It will focus on areas including Cessnock and Port Stephens, up to Muswellbrook and down to Newcastle.
“That vein through the Hunter down to our coast has been problematic,” he said.
“We know that the gangs, Finks and Nomads, have been warring for some considerable time. Raptor has been working with us now for a number of months and we have been actually trialling this concept since April 1 this year.
“Their purpose is about targeting, disrupting and dismantling criminal groups, and building on the Raptor brand.”
Raptor North is based within the Lake Macquarie Police District.
Anyone with information, including relevant photos and videos, that may assist Strike Force Raptor can report it directly to investigators via the Strike Force Raptor online reporting page: https://www1.police.nsw.gov.au/Default.aspx?id=49 or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
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