The Norwegian police force’s
efforts to combat outlaw
motorcycle gangs, 2011 to 2015
National Police Directorate
Number printed: 4,000
POD Publication no. 2010/15
ISBN: ISBN 978-82-8256-009-2
Table of Contents Foreword
1 Introduction 4 The police force’s fight against criminal
1.1 The working group 4 motorcycle gangs is a continuation of
1.2 Structure of the report 4 the action plan to combat outlaw mot-
orcycle gangs prepared by the National
2 The development of outlaw motorcycle gangs 6 Police Directorate (POD) for 2003-2008.
2.1 Introduction: Which outlaw Policing biker gangs has been and remains
motorcycle gangs require priority policing? 6 a top priority. Despite the efforts of the
2.2 Hells Angels – motto: “When we do right nobody police force and society in general to
remembers. When we do wrong nobody forgets.” 6 combat such groups, there has been a
2.3 Bandidos – motto: “We are the people our parents substantial growth among motorcycle
warned us about” 6 gangs since they first were established in
2.4 Outlaws – motto: “God Forgives, Outlaws Don’t – GFOD” 7 Norway around the start of the 1990s.
2.5 Coffin Cheaters MC 7
Motorcycle gangs have now gained a solid
3 The police force’s efforts to combat outlaw foothold on an international scale, and
motorcycle groups 8 the police force and society in general
are faced with major challenges in terms
4 Outlaw motorcycle gangs in Norway today 9 of combating their criminal activities.
4.1 Individual motivations for becoming members and This strategic report has been compiled
links between the members 9 to tie together and target the efforts of
4.2 The outlaw motorcycle gangs 9 the police force against outlaw motor-
4.2.1 Structure of the basic organisation 9 cycle gangs. Analysis, intelligence work,
4.2.2 Club uniforms and what they say 11 criminal prosecution, coordination and
4.2.3 How the clubs take care of their members development of expertise are some of the
and supporters 12 keywords that will describe our efforts in
4.2.4 In-house discipline within the clubs 13 the years to come.
4.2.5 The club members from a law-breaking perspective 13
4.2.6 The clubs’ income and outgoings 14 In the main the report is a continuation
4.3 How outlaw motorcycle gangs function within society 14 of the initiatives described in the former
4.3.1 Relationships to other, similar motorcycle groups 14 action plan. However, the evolution of
4.3.2 Relationship with the media and establishment of outlaw motorcycle gangs has challenged
“goodwill” 16 the police force’s traditional approach to
4.3.3 Age of the motorcycle gangs as an expression of the understanding criminal networks. The
criminal potential 16 report therefore distinguishes between
4.4 Criminality inflicted on society by motorcycle gangs 16 combating motorcycle gang crime as one
4.5 Summary 18 element, and the organisation that faci-
litates such crime. With such a two-tier
5 Overall threat 20 approach, the National Police Directorate
is now prepared to reinforce its efforts
6 The police force’s strategic goals and initiatives 21 against motorcycle gangs over the next
6.1 Analyses of motorcycle gangs 21 four years.
6.2 Regional collaboration 21
6.3 Continuation of the motorcycle manual developed by the The efforts of the police force and follow-
National Criminal Investigation Service (Kripos) 21 up of this report will be evaluated over
6.4 Kripos as coordinator for collaboration regarding time.
motorcycle gangs 21
6.5 Police force collaboration with public and private bodies 21
6.6 Focus on opportunities and not limitations The National Police Directorate, 30
when combating this type of crime 22 November 2010
7 Evaluation of the report and crime-fighting efforts 22
Ingelin Killengreen, National Police
1.1 The working group
The working group has prepared its report in parallel
with the reports regarding the police force’s efforts
to combat gang and drug crimes from 2011 to 2015,
and further insight can be gained from reading these
reports in context. The reports describe the develop-
ment in crime and provide guidelines for how the
police districts and special units (hereinafter referred
to as the police force) shall prevent such crime for
the period from 2011 to 2015.
1.2 Structure of the report
The report describes how the police force shall
prevent projected motorcycle gang crime in the near
future. In order to be able to describe future crime,
we need information about its development (chapter
2) and how the police have combated such crime
(chapter 3). With this information, we are then
able to describe the current crime picture (chapter
4). Knowledge of history and the current situation
allows us to make qualified hypotheses regarding
the development of crime (chapter 5). Being able to
describe the development of crime also enables us to
propose measures (chapter 6). This report and the
application of it by the police force will be evaluated
as a part of the work to develop know-how within
the police (chapter 7).
2 The development of outlaw motorcycle gangs
2.1 Introduction: Which outlaw prospect members, who belonged to the following MC Northland and Bandidos MC East Coast. On 17 support club, the Black Pistons.
motorcycle gangs require priority policing? The seven chapters as of March 2010: December 1993, both chapters were promoted to full Today, the Outlaws have a total of 2647 chapters
police force’s efforts to combat outlaw motorcycle membership in Bandido Nation, as the very first in and prospect chapters comprising 106 chapters in
gangs are primarily a question of counteracting the • Hells Angels MC Trondheim (full member 1 Scandinavia. Bandidos currently has 246 chapters the USA and Canada, 144 chapters in Europe, 17 in
networks which partly or wholly comprise outlaw August 1992) in 15 different countries.6 Bandidos also has 142 Australia and 3 in South East Asia. In Scandinavia,
members of these gangs. • Hells Angels MC Oslo (full member 14 September support groups listed on its web site. In Norway, the Outlaws are only present in Sweden and Norway;
1996) Bandidos had 48 members and prospect members as Hells Angels and Bandidos dominate in Denmark.
Motorcycle gang crime is most commonly committed • Hells Angels MC Stavanger (full member 14 of January 2010 in the following chapters:
by the so-called «one percenters». The one percen- September 1996) In Norway, the Outlaws have recruited the highest
ters are clubs and individuals who belong to the • Hells Angels MC Hamar (full member 8 May 1999) • Bandidos MC Oslo (founded on 1 February number of members over recent years and have
section of the motorcycle community which does not • Hells Angels MC Skien (full member 30 1997) approx. 70 members and prospect members distribu-
define itself as part of normal society, or at least the November 2002) • Bandidos MC Drammen (founded on 1 ted over the following chapters as of March 2010:
law-abiding motorcycle groups, and which follow • Hells Angels MC Troms (full member 29 February 1997)
their own laws and regulations. They see themselves September 2006) • Bandidos MC Fredrikstad (founded in 1998) • Outlaws Oslo (founded in 2000)
as a brotherhood, and numerous members are con- • Hells Angels MC Drammen (full member 1 • Bandidos MC Stavanger (founded on 9 • Outlaws Nomads (founded in December 2007)
victed criminals. The clubs emerged from a sub-cul- September 2007) November 2002) • Outlaws Drammen
ture which developed in post-war USA, with a focus • MC Bergen (prospect club) • Bandidos MC Kristiansand • Outlaws Fredrikstad
on street motorcycles, in particular Harley Davidsons (founded on 5 July 2003). This chapter is • Outlaws Jessheim
and choppers, and a set of ideals involving freedom, The clubs under the domain of the Hells Angels frozen due to understaffing, and the • Outlaws Stavanger
non-conformity and loyalty to the club. are in the majority and have a much more stable members have been transferred to the • Outlaws Trondheim
membership than the clubs belonging to Bandidos/ Drammen chapter. • Outlaws Norway North (prospective)
2.2 Hells Angels1 – motto: Outlaws: More than 90% of the other one percenter • Bandidos MC Lillestrøm • Outlaws Kristiansand (prospective)
“When we do right nobody remembers. When we do clubs in Norway support Hells Angels. By intro- • Probationary Asker (official prospect chapter) • Outlaws Sarpsborg (founded 18 September
wrong nobody forgets.” ducing the Norwegian model,4 Hells Angels has 2009)
Hells Angels was founded in March 1948 in secured itself a stable supply of new members. Over Since their foundation in Norway, Bandidos has • Outlaws Eidsvoll (founded in January 2010)
California. The structure of the club has provided the past few years, Hells Angels has welcomed an reinforced its position within the motorcycle com-
a model for other motorcycle clubs. Hells Angels increasing number of new prospect chapters, and munity by recruiting and building up support groups Outlaws are allied with the following motorcy-
expanded throughout the 1960s in the USA. The first receives numerous requests for membership from such as Red & Gold Crew and Support X-team. These cle groups: Bandidos, Mongols and Pagans in the
international Hells Angels chapter was established motorcycle clubs. support groups are not necessarily motorcycle ent- USA and a group within the American Mafia “The
in New Zealand in 1961. In July 1969, the very first Hells Angels is affiliated with other criminal coali- husiasts and mainly comprise young criminal males. Chicago Outfit”.8
European chapter of Hells Angels was founded in tions such as the Aryan Brotherhood, the Cali cartel As of May 2009, Bandidos had ten support groups in
London. During the 1970s and 80s, Hells Angels in Colombia, the Indian Posse gang in Canada and different towns and cities in Norway. 2.5 Coffin Cheaters MC
opened several chapters in Europe and the USA. At the Iron Horsemen and Warlocks outlaw motorcycle The Coffin Cheaters club was founded in the town of
the same time, the club consolidated its position in clubs in the USA.5 2.4 Outlaws – motto: Perth, Australia in
Australia with the opening of a number of chapters “God Forgives, Outlaws Don’t – GFOD” 1970. The Australian police force describes the club
there. The 1980s and 90s saw a substantial expan- 2.3 Bandidos – motto: McCook Outlaws Motorcycle Club was founded in as one of the most well-run one percenter clubs in
sion of Hells Angels in Canada. “We are the people our parents warned us about” 1935 along the old motorway, Route 66, in the US the country, with good resources and solid finances.
Bandidos was founded in 1966 in Texas, USA, state of Illinois. The club achieved a substantial In Australia, the Coffin Cheaters are larger than Hells
The first chapter in Scandinavia was established modelling themselves on Hells Angels. During the growth during the first post-war years in the Chicago Angels. Coffin Cheaters only exist in Australia and
on 31 December 1980, when the Unionen MC in 1970s, Bandidos achieved substantial growth, area, and set up base in Chicago in 1950, changing Norway. In Norway, the Coffin Cheaters founded
Copenhagen became Hells Angels MC Copenhagen. mainly in the south-eastern states. The first internati- its name to The Chicago Outlaws. the Forbidden Few MC Lillestrøm club in September
This is still considered to be the leading Hells Angels onal chapter of the Bandidos was formed in Sydney, In 1963, the Outlaws became official members of the 2004 as a full blown chapter. This move was in defi-
chapter in Scandinavia. Australia in December 1983. The establishment of one percenter brotherhood of motorcycle clubs and ance of the Hell Angels’ hegemony over the estab-
the first European chapter took place in the spring of continued to grow in the USA. The first chapter to lishment of new one percenter clubs. However, Hells
Today, Hells Angels has 310 chapters in 32 coun- 1989, when the Bandidos MC Marseilles chapter was be founded abroad was in 1977 in Canada. The first Angels had to accept the new club in order to avoid a
tries, and is the largest club of one percenters.2 formed in South France. intercontinental chapters were set up in France in «war» in Australia.
Furthermore, the club’s web site reports the exis- 1993 and Australia in 1994. Over the next decade,
tence of five official hang-around and prospect chap- In 1992 Bandidos began its expansion in Europe with the Outlaws gained significant expansion. With The Coffin Cheaters aim to grow even further. They
ters.3 In Norway, Hells Angels has 113 members and two probationary chapters in Denmark: Bandidos effect from 2002, the Outlaws had their first official have ten chapters in Australia and three in Norway,
with an approximate total of between 200 and300
members. The Norwegian chapter has 25 members
1 Source: Kripos publication «MC-håndbok» dated 29 November 2006 and supplementary information from www.en.wikipedia.org. 6 According to figures from Europol in May 2010. and prospect members distributed among the chap-
According to figures from Europol in May 2010.
As of 27 May 2010. The Hells Angels’ web site does not accurately specify the number of members (or chapters).
7 According to figures from Europol in May 2010. ters in Lillestrøm, Stjørdal and Gjøvik.
8 According to the description of Outlaws on www.en.wikipedia.org
4 In brief, the Norwegian model states that no one percenter club is allowed to start up without approval from the club which is responsible for the region. This has resul-
ted in the majority of one percenters coming under the domain of the Hells Angels.
5 According to the description of Hells Angels on www.en.wikipedia.org.
3 The police force’s efforts to combat outlaw motorcycle groups 4 Outlaw motorcycle gangs in Norway today
It was not until the early 1980s that the Norwegian a national project under the management of Oslo This report focuses on the international one per- requirement for secrecy in relation to third parties.
police began to experience problems with outlaw Police District. center clubs, Hells Angels, Bandidos, Outlaws and
motorcycle gangs. The police stations in Trondheim, Coffin Cheaters, currently established in Norway.10 All the clubs have a leading body. In Hells Angels, the
Rogaland and Oslo were particularly affected and In 2003, the National Police Directorate prepared its As these clubs are very similar, they are discussed principal body is the «world rally». The Bandidos,
entered into a collaboration. The Danish police also plan of action, entitled: «Politiets bekjempelse av kri- jointly in the report. Outlaws and Coffin Cheaters have permanent
took part in this collaboration as the Norwegian minelle MC-miljøer 2003–2008» (the police force’s leadership bodies, for example the Bandidos’ El
clubs had close links with the Danish clubs. fight against outlaw motorcycle groups, 2003-2008). 4.1 Individual motivations for becoming members Presidente. All the international one percenter clubs
Kripos was assigned the role of central coordinator, and links between the members hold regular regional and global meetings at which
The outlaw motorcycle clubs became a matter for both at home and abroad. Furthermore, ROK provi- Members of the established one percenter clubs are they discuss rules and other matters.
the central authorities and featured on their agendas ded assistance on ten major cases involving members recruited from the supporter clubs. Those persons
from the start of the 1990s. In Circular G-1 48/91, of motorcycle gangs, and the police successfully recruited most often have resources or know-how All the international motorcycle gangs are organised
the Ministry of Justice and Police in Norway, in collaborated with local partners. Despite the efforts which is of use to the club. into chapters. The chapters comprise at least five or
consultation with the Director of Public Prosecution of the police and society at large, the number of mot- six full members. The chapters are organised
in Norway, decided to implement a project to orcycle club chapters still increased from 11 in 2003 Researchers and former members agree that profit according to a common template, with no room for
combat outlaw motorcycle groups in Norway. This to 25 in 2009, in addition to the establishment of the or the desire to commit crimes is seldom the sole differences, and can be compared to franchises. If a
was a joint project between the Oslo police head- Coffin Cheaters in 2004. motivating factor for becoming a one percenter. In chapter should be undermanned, for example due
quarters and Kripos (the National Bureau of Crime general, the motivation is that of living a lifestyle to members being arrested or withdrawing from the
Investigation Service now known as the National The evaluation of the action plan in 2009 indicated characterised by ideals of independence, solidarity club, this has to be reported to the club management,
Criminal Investigation Service), aiming to track the that there was still a need for the police, in coope- and freedom. The process to become a member which then decides whether the chapter should be
groups and prevent their expansion. At the same ration with other public authorities and society at is long, uncertain and demanding, so prospective frozen or reinforced with members from other clubs.
time, a nationwide contact person scheme was large, to actively fight outlaw motorcycle clubs. The members require a high level of motivation. Full
established and a strategy laid down. This strategy evaluation highlighted the need for a more clearly members are most often adults, as the clubs often Each chapter is organised according to a traditional
provided guidelines for tracking outlaw motorcycle defined and binding adoption of the plan of action, expect a certain degree of maturity and repertoire of hierarchical structure:
clubs, listing a number of operational countermeasu- and a need to increase know-how within the area. a prospective member. • Internally, the President is in control of the chapter
res, including investigations. and its members. He has right of veto at member
Numerous international projects and groups have The club members do not only meet in one arena; meetings and can amend decisions made. The Vice
In 1995, the National Bureau of Crime Investigation been set up to work on motorcycle gangs: they work together, maintain their motorcycles, President represents the President in his absence.
was allocated main responsibility for intelligence prepare activity plans and party together. They • The Sergeant at Arms is in charge of security and is
work in Norway. This responsibility also covered the • The PTN-collaboration (police and customs form multiplex relationships which are strong, easy responsible for maintaining an overview of the
motorcycle gang project. As such, the Ministry of in the Nordic countries) is an important tool to mobilise and long-lasting, and which therefore club’s enemies, defending the club/chapter and
Justice and the Police prepared a new set of instruc- for successful collaboration among the Nordic create strong bonds of loyalty within the motorcycle keeping order in the ranks. He reports directly to
tions for the project, highlighting the importance of countries. Norway is in charge of the PTN Rocker gangs, at least within the club. However, there are the President and is entitled, on order, to discipline
good intelligence efforts. project.9 The goal of this project is to collect, plenty of examples to indicate that conditions within including physically disciplining - members who
process, analyse and communicate the clubs are not as idyllic as one might imagine. have broken club rules, or who have acted in a way
In 1997, a Nordic action plan to combat biker gang relevant information on crimes committed by which puts the club or chapter in a bad light. During
crime was drawn up. In 1999, the Ministry of Justice members of outlaw motorcycle clubs. 4.2 The outlaw motorcycle gangs such disciplinary procedures, the other members
and the Police requested an enhanced coordination • Europol includes outlaw motorcycle clubs as This chapter sets out to describe the motorcycle have to support “the Sergeant”.
of strategy and the implementation of measures one of its main target areas. Norway is part of the gangs as a network. In many ways, this is more sim- • The secretary/treasurer is in charge of
among central agencies and the police districts. The Europol project called Monitor. ple to describe than other criminal networks, partly administration in each chapter, for example writing
threat now presented by these gangs was described • International Outlaw Motorcycle Gang because the organisation and ideology is visible, the minutes of meetings, keeping an overview of
as alarming, and the Ministry of Justice and the Investigators Association (IOMGA) is a worldwide definable and relatively rigid. For the purpose of this finances and collecting club fines and fees from
Police aimed to intensify the fight by establishing association and organises an annual conference for description, it is appropriate to distinguish between members.
the police. the club and the club members. The club is a basic • The Road Captain is responsible for organised
9 The term “rocker” is defined as the side, top and bottom arch on a motorcycle vest or jacket.
organisation11 within which the members are chapter activities such as trips and rallies.
The One Percenter concept The chapter’s (full) members have the right to speak
4.2.1 Structure of the basic organisation and vote during chapter meetings. The members of
The term «One Percenter» is thought to have been introduced after One common factor for the motorcycle gangs is that each chapter are also members of the entire world-
the motorcycle rally in Hollister, California in 1947, at which a number of they have a fixed structure of laws and regulations wide club. New members in Bandidos are appoin-
criminal acts were committed. The American Motorcyclist Association for their organisation and administration.12 The ted an older member as «sponsor». A sponsor is
– AMA, which organised the event, is said to have stated that the gangs have supranational, national and local sets responsible for the new member for a period of five
problems were caused by the one percent of dissidents who tarnished of regulations. These are obligatory, even if they years, including responsibility for ensuring that the
the public. collide with the rules imposed by society. The clubs member is not a police agent.
also have ethical standards, for example an absolute
10 Another Norwegian One Percenter club is Wino’s Crew, originating from BoozeFighters MC.
11 For more information on the basic organisation and the interaction between this and the organisation members, we recommend Kriminelle organisasjoner – Hvordan
forstå organisert kriminalitet, by Ivar A. Fahsing and Petter Gottschalk, Fagbokforlaget 2008, pp. 98 and 99.
12 For example, HAMC Word Rules, HAMC Europe By-laws, Bandidos’ MC Europe By-laws, Outlaws’ AOA European Rules and Coffin Cheaters Constitution.
The majority of members belong to a specific geo- Examples of legal activities which prospects have Crew is named AK81.21 In Norway, there are the «court» for the clubs, providing them with cre-
graphical chapter, while certain chapters or mem- to carry out are security guard, tidying and serving support groups in Stavanger, Kristiansand and dibility, legitimacy, prestige and power. The official
bers are nomads.13 Nomads comprise members who behind bars. There is reason to believe that illegal Trondheim. The members of these groups often support clubs originate from the one percenter clubs
are experienced, loyal and are very familiar with activities, according to circumstances, may strengt- have a criminal record and a high number have and are therefore more harmonious with these; Red
the organisation. In general, nomads enjoy a high hen a prospect or hang-around’s candidacy for full experience from martial arts. The chapter in Devils MC27 and Devils Choice MC28 are official
status and the clubs make use of nomads to reinforce membership. In connection with the Tokke murder Kristiansand recruits from the town’s right-wing support clubs for the Hells Angels in Scandinavia.
chapters which have been impaired or to generally case, one of the accused, who at that time was a pro- extremist groups. Official support clubs for the Bandidos include
help the club.14 spect in Hells Angels MC Stavanger, stated that he - Outlaws’ Black & White Crew is similar to Diablos MC29 and Compadres MC in Drammen.
was subordinated to a member and had to carry out the Red & White Support Crew and Support
In order to become a full member of a club, candida- the tasks he had been given. Such tasks may involve X-Team. There are other sympathisers (supporters, friends
tes have to climb through the ranks - from hang- sales of drugs, serious theft etc. and party girls) with no official connection to a club
around to prospect to full member. Hang-arounds: - Hells Angels in Denmark introduced a new - or any form of connection at all. A common feature
a phase during which connections are made and the Affiliated chapters comprise the club’s official initiative22 in the form of the official Viking of these seems to be that they are attracted by the
hang-arounds have to prove their worth as future support groups: Defence League Denmark. Members of the personalities within the motorcycle environment,
prospects by carrying out various tasks for the club. - Support X-Team is an official, international sup- above are official supporters but not members of their ideals, structure, potential earnings etc. A num-
Hang-arounds have the opportunity to become port group for Bandidos. The support group is a Hells Angels or AK81. Membership fees are paid ber of these «sympathisers» take part at club events
future members of a club and are also allowed to pool from which Bandidos recruits prospective to the Hells Angels’ Danish “Defence Fund”, i.e. and at events where persons from the clubs normally
take part in parties and meet full members. Hang- members. The group is established in Denmark, the fund set up to support jailed members, pro- attend. They are examples of «honey traps» laid by
arounds are not entitled to wear the club uniform. If Norway and Sweden. A member of Support spects, hang-arounds and AK81 members.23 No the clubs in the form of drugs/sex in order to con
a hang-around is able to meet the acceptance requi- X-Team is entitled to wear the Support X-Team requirements are made of the supporters, and sympathisers who are of interest to the club or chap-
rements, he may be upgraded to a prospect. uniform, but not a motorcycle jacket showing detailed information on the group is only avai- ter. Sympathisers can be used or forced to provide for
membership or prospective membership in lable via membership. Membership is gained by the club or members. They also help earn income for
Prospects15 (probationaries16 and probates17) are Bandidos. Uniforms are only available from a paying a membership fee of DKK 300 to support the club by selling club accessories, tattoos etc. and
official prospective members for full membership contact person, who normally is a full member criminals.24 In practice, these support groups to make the club more socially acceptable.
of the club. Prospects wear a patch on their jacket of Bandidos. A Support X-Team is in the main target minors.26
which ties them to the club, but not the club logo. organised in the same way as the chapters,18 It is therefore evident that the one percenters have
They can take part at chapter meetings but do not and the members wear a uniform in the club There is a high level of criminal activity among the a hierarchical organisation, apparently much more
have a right to vote. A prospect is subordinate to all colours - yellow and red. A Support X-Team support groups, comprising all types of crime from highly structured than that required for a gang of
full members and must prove that he has the ability must have at least five members and the age the sale of drugs to violence and vandalism.26 motorcycle enthusiasts. The clubs have legislative,
and willingness to carry out obligatory tasks or meet limit is 18.19 It is thought that the groups are utilised by the mem- executive and judicial bodies which keep control of
the expectations of the club. Prospect members are - red & White Support Crew20 is the official bers of the motorcycle gangs to carry out assign- the members, the organisation, finances and acti-
elected to the club, and it is therefore common prac- support group for Hells Angels. Red & White ments they find too risky. The support groups recruit vities. In addition to this basic structure, the clubs
tice for prospects to set off on an election campaign, Support Crew is thought to have been estab- from youths already involved in crime and who are establish ties with support groups and sympathisers
visiting the different chapters in the country/region lished as a counterpart to Bandidos’ Support searching for a sense of belonging, but who are not in order to gain added strength.
to meet full members. Acceptance to a chapter/ X-Team, and its organisation and uniform is necessarily interested in motorcycles. In the hands of
club takes place in the form of an official ceremony, very similar to the latter. The support group is the motorcycle gangs, these young people are turned 4.2.2 Club uniforms and what they say30
whereby a prospect becomes «Full-Patched», i.e. is responsible for a major share of the visible cri- into multiple criminals and represent obedient “Colors” is a collective term used to describe the sym-
awarded the club logo and the top and bottom roc- mes committed under the auspices of the Hells instruments for the club. bols or insignias worn on the members’ motorcycle
ker, as a full member. Angels. In Denmark, the Red & White Support jackets. “Colors” is a part of an international system
13 All the clubs with the exception of Coffin Cheaters have nomads. Bandidos’ probationaries. Furthermore, the motorcycle gangs are supported of signs governed by strict rules. Only full members
14 Nomads are the motorcycle gangs’ version of the Libero within football. 18 With officers in the form of President, Vice President, Security Chief and normal by a number of official and even greater number of are permitted to wear the club colors. The insignias
15 Can also be defined as candidate members.
16 Bandidos has three phases, prospect, probationary then member. Probationa- 19 However, members are not required to have a Harley Davidson to become unofficial support clubs. The unofficial support clubs worn on the back of the jackets are identical for all
ries are candidates for around six months before gaining membership. Proba-
tionaries are allowed to wear “The Fat Mexican”-logo and have status as officer.
members of Bandidos.
20 Red and white are the club colours for Hells Angels
may have been forced to join the system as a part of club members, while the jacket front may vary from
17 In the Outlaws, Probates are qualified prospect members, as with the the consolidation into the motorcycle environment. member to member. In addition to the One Percenter
They are therefore not necessarily criminals or sup- patch, there is an insignia which shows the member’s
The name Hells Angels and the insignia on the back of their jackets porters of the motorcycle gang. These clubs make up rank in the club, for example President or Vice
21 AK81 stands for «Alltid klar Hells Angels» (Always Ready Hells Angels). The num- chapter, the club must submit an official application either to Red Devils MC
The name Hells Angels was utilised for military formations during the ber 8 represents the letter H and the number 1 represents the letter A. or to Hells Angels. Outside of Sweden, Red Devils MC has chapters in the USA,
22 The support group was officially founded in March 2010 and also has a Facebook Germany, South Africa and Singapore.
First and Second World Wars. The film Hells Angels from 1930 portrays group with 4,199 fans as of 9April 2010. 28 Devils Choice MC is a new MC club comprising 130 bikers from Hog Riders,
dramatic and heroic air combat from the First World War. During the 23 www.vikingdefenceleaugue.dk 24 March 2010. Immortals, Tornados and Chieftains, and which are part of the HA system in
24 With a view to the «war» in Denmark between Hells Angels and ethnic gangs for Denmark. This is the Danish opposite of Sweden’s Red Devils.
Second World War, this name was used for a squadron in China, a the drugs market, the fund could be described as a «war fund». 29 Bandidos MC founded an official support club in 1999, called
bomber formation in England and the 11th Airborne division. The colours 25 Statement made by Hells Angels’ spokesperson in Denmark, Jørn Jønke Nielsen, Diablos MC. Diablos MC was established in Sweden in October 2001. To date, Sweden
to the Bergens Tidende newspaper, quoted on www.dagbladet.no on 20 March and
and shape of the insignia 2010. Finland are the only Nordic countries where Diablos MC has set up chapters. Mem-
“The Winged Death’s Head” is thought to originate from the 85th Fighter 26 In Sweden, no less than 89% of the members have been convicted of crimes, bers of Diablos MC are seen at the majority of Nordic events held by Bandidos.
ref. report dated 18 June 2009 from Sweden, «Handlingsplan Hells Angels MC – Half the club members are Europeans and the rest are from Thailand.
Squadron and the 552nd Medium Bomber Squadron. Hells Angels Västra Götaland och Halland». 30 Ref. Kripos’ MC handbook and patrol car handbook - one percenter motorcycle
27 To date, the Red Devils MC’s only representation in Scandinavia is in Sweden. gangs.
registered a trade mark for the insignia in 1972. Red Devils MC Sweden was founded in August 2001, when four Swedish clubs, 31 With Outlaws, it is not common for officers to wear their officer title on their
all loyal and with close ties to Hells Angels MC Sweden were merged. If another jackets.
motorcycle club seeks acceptance and to establish a Red Devils MC Sweden
President.31 The different clubs also have specific dominance34 and pure strength. Not only do the «brotherly» community or fellowship. This fellowship provoke short and brutal reactions.40 A person in
symbols or insignias which the individual member members of the one percenters think of themselves also paves the way for members to earn money, both bad standing is an undesirable both for the club and
has earned, for example, if they have acted vio- as the «elite» within the motorcycle environment, legally and illegally. The club may provide financial the one percenters in general, and cannot apply for
lently towards the police or have resisted arrest (the they often think of themselves as racially elite, and support to members via their «Defence Fund». The new membership. The different clubs share their bad
«dequiallo» symbol) or are guilty of or an accomplice it is common to see hints of racism within these money for this Defence Fund comes from member standing lists with each other.
to murder for the club (the «filthy few» symbol). groups.35 However, the clubs are pragmatic enough contributions, sale of accessories and in the form
not to allow racism to obstruct that which could of loans. The funds provide financial support to 4.2.5 The club members from a law-breaking
The club logos worn on the members’ jackets are bor- benefit the club or its members. members who are in jail and pay for lawyers’ fees/ perspective
rowed from the club. In other words, the members private investigators, particularly for legal cases The members of the outlaw motorcycle gangs are
do not own the logo32 and have to return it if they The conditions for becoming a member of Hells involving principle. The clubs follow up members often involved in serious crime, particularly drug
withdraw from or are excluded from the club. There Angels are that you have a valid driving licence and a who are jailed, sending them newsletters and other trafficking, collecting money by means of violence
are also examples where the Hells Angels tattoo is functioning motorcycle. Hells Angels does not accept members are obliged to write to and visit their jailed (torpedo) and violence. Committing crimes is made
similarly «confiscated» upon withdrawal or exclu- child molesters or persons who have applied to «brothers». Jailed members often have much better easier due to the member’s affiliation with the club
sion, either by tattooing the withdrawal date over become police officers or prison guards. Prospective conditions than other inmates, which can often because he can play on its “goodwill”. At the same
the existing tattoo or by physical removal. members will also be rejected if they have close result in the recruitment of prospective members. time, the legal aspects are catered for in that the
family relations who may work or have worked for clubs are for motorcycle enthusiasts who share a fel-
It is very humiliating for club members to have their the police or prison service.36 Violent tendencies 4.2.4 In-house discipline within the clubs lowship and sense of belonging. It has been claimed
«colors» confiscated. The uniform thus becomes a do not appear to be a deterrent for membership. A The clubs have a supranational and national set of that it is this lifestyle, and not the opportunity to
form of communication both internally and exter- recent trend has emerged where the clubs establish regulations. The main purpose of these regulations commit crimes, which represents the highest moti-
nally. The main message is one for all, all for one and ties with persons who have expertise within financial is to safeguard the club’s interests - not to regulate vating factor for members. However, crime appears
aggression - a message which in practice has signi- planning etc., in order to bolster other dimensions of the members’ relationship with society at large. If a to permeate the clubs’ organisation, support system
ficant impact. Disagreements regarding the insignia their activities. member breaches the club regulations,39 he may be and ideology in such a way that it is appropriate to
on the back of jackets have given rise to violent disciplined. question whether crime is yet another dimension of
conflicts and clashes between clubs. As a member of a motorcycle gang, you resign from the lifestyle.
normal society and enter a closed fellowship with If the breach is severe, the club has two forms of
4.2.3 How the clubs take care of their members and a strong outer spirit of solidarity. Each individual sanction. The member may leave the club in good No information has been found of persons wanting
supporters member is sure that his «brothers» will support him standing. This is a mild form of reaction where the to join the outlaw motorcycle gangs and being rejec-
The international one percenter clubs primarily and stand by his side.37 This «brotherhood» applies member still has access to the club and can apply for ted on the grounds of the person’s criminal back-
provide an ideological fellowship for motorcycle to all members of the club, including «brothers» in new membership starting from the beginning and ground. On the contrary, there are several examples
enthusiasts. Coffin Cheaters highlight the departure other countries. Individual members therefore feel climbing the ranks from hang-around and prospect. of prospective members who have achieved full
from the welfare state and the choice of a free and safe that they will not be stabbed in the back by their membership shortly after a conviction involving
unrestrained lifestyle when describing themsel- «brothers». This dimension of trust implies that agre- If the breach is of such a nature that it harms the serious crime. Convicted members are expected to
ves.33 The word «motorcycle» is not mentioned in ements can be reached without any former personal club’s interests or status, or that individual members serve their sentence without informing on other
this context. The ideology of the Coffin Cheaters is contact.38 are compromised in relation to the police or media, members. At the same time, the club provides finan-
mainly the same as that of Hells Angels, Bandidos the person may have to leave in bad standing. In cial support via their Defence Fund, and moral sup-
and Outlaws. Other ideals are brotherhood, male The club therefore represents a strong ideological an keeping with the one percenter clubs’ low thres- port by awarding specific insignia for imprisonment,
hold for violence, breaches of the regulations often a mention on the club web site41 etc.
32 As previously mentioned, the Hells Angels logo is a registered trademark.
33 www.coffincheatersmc.org 13 April 2010.
34 In the NRK documentary, Brennpunkt, broadcast 18 May 2010, a member of Hells Angels stated that it is not unusual to offer female cohabitants and friends to other
members. 39 In an interview with NRK in the summer of 2000, the President of Outlaws MC Norway, Dag Edvind Sterkeby, stated that the internal laws were stricter than those in
35 Nazi-like symbolism is common on the web sites of affiliated groups. Hells Angels is also affiliated with the Aryan Brotherhood - a white supremacist criminal group society at large, and that a breach of the laws resulted in a more stringent reaction.
in the USA, originating from American jails. 40 Three members of Outlaws MC Belgia were convicted of the murder of another member in the summer of 2005. The background to the murder was that the member
36 However, there is an exception to this rule in Norway. had been guilty of a breach of the internal Outlaws regulations.
37 «Your Brother isn’t always right but he is always your Brother. It’s one in all and all in one» – quoted from the Bandidos’ Norwegian website, www.bandidosmc.no, 41 Hells Angels members serving a prison sentence are known as “Big House Crew”, and a separate website has been set up for such members: www.bighousecrew.
13 April 2010. net. The website sells items such as
38 The significance of trust is also mentioned in the report «Organisert kriminalitet i Norge» (organised crime in Norway). T-shirts with the profits spent on supporting the «brothers» in jail.
Colours Coffin Cheaters
“Colors” is a collective term used to describe the symbols or logos worn on We do not choose to be common men, it is our right to be uncommon – if we can. We seek opportunity – not
the members’ motorcycle jackets. “Colors” is a part of an international system security. We do not wish to be kept citizens, humbled and dull by having the state look after us. We want to
of signs governed by strict rules. Only full members are permitted to wear the take the calculated risk, to dream and built – to fail, to succeed. We refuse to barter incentive for a dole. We
club colors. The insignias worn on the back of the jackets are identical for all prefer the challenge of life to the guaranteed existence – the thrill of fulfilment to the calm state of utopia.
club members, while the jacket front may vary from member to member. We will not trade our freedom for beneficence nor our dignity for a handout. We will never cower before any
master nor bend to any threat. It is our heritage to stand erect, proud and unafraid – to think and act for
ourselves, enjoy the benefits of our creations and face the world boldly, and say, this we have done.
Of the 113 Hells Angels members and prospect foundations is that the creditors are not entitled to
members in Norway, 85 or 75% have been convicted hold the shareholders or founders financially liable
of criminal offences. Of the 48 Bandidos members for the company/foundation or vice versa. One prac-
and prospect members in Norway, 30 or approx. 62% tical example of this is that any claims for seizure
have been convicted of offences. For Coffin Cheaters, made against one member will be limited to his
these figures are 14 of 25 members, or 56% shareholding. If the company - or foundation - goes
In 2007, Kripos investigated the criminal records of bankrupt due to a seizure, the member’s liability will
184 members and prospect members of Hells Angels, be limited to the amount he subscribed as share capi-
Bandidos and Outlaws. The investigation showed tal (or donation to the foundation).44 This provides
that 126 had convictions, a total of 69% of members. the member and club with a formal, legal severance
Of these 126, a total of 111 had been convicted of in the event of claims from third parties. On the
crimes while 15 were convicted of offences. In total, other hand, several of the club premises provide
74 had been convicted during the last five years. living quarters for members and registered business
Many of the persons convicted had committed cri- addresses for their companies.
mes during the past 20 years.
4.3 How outlaw motorcycle gangs function
4.2.6 The clubs’ income and outgoings within society
It is important to distinguish between the finances of In the above, the motorcycle gangs are described as
the club and those of members, even if these can at a separate entity. However, their description must be
times be mixed together. viewed in the context of how they function within
society. It is only then that we can establish a good
For Bandidos, all chapters pay a monthly amount for basis on which to describe how crimes are commit-
each member and prospect member to Bandidos MC ted and how the police force can combat such crime.
National Chapter. Furthermore, each new chapter
pays an establishment fee. A fee is also charged for 4.3.1 Relationships to other, similar motorcycle
withdrawal or exclusion. It is thought that the clubs/ groups
chapters also charge a percentage fee from illegal During the period from 1994 to 1997, the outlaw
earnings gained by members, possibly as a «duty» for motorcycle gangs in the Nordic countries fought
use of the club’s violent image. among themselves for control of the drugs market,
for example - resulting in the Nordic MC war. Police
The motorcycle gangs control the chains of tattoo have established direct links with this conflict to 11
parlours, Tattoo World42 / House of Pain43 (Hells murders45 and 74 attempted murders. In the autumn
Angels) and Tattoo Nation (Bandidos). They also of 1997, the Danish Hells Angels and Bandidos
control the chains of shops selling supporter gear, announced in the media that they had reached an
Route 81 and Bad Boys Wear. Hells Angels in Finland agreement regarding a «peace treaty», and they
is involved in more than 80 companies with a total established a control committee and hotline to
turnover of more than EUR 60 million. prevent more open conflict. The clubs are pragmatic
enough to realise that open warfare is bad for busi-
The largest expenses for the clubs are most pro- ness, and to date the market is sufficiently profitable
bably the club premises, creating ties within local for all parties.
communities and travel expenses for participation
at meetings and parties in Norway and abroad. However, the absence of war-like acts cannot be
The cost of club premises can reach several million interpreted as peace and tolerance. Since 2000,
Norwegian krone. Vast sums of money are in general the clubs have been fighting a cold war to gain the
spent on security for the club premises, with sur- largest possible expansion of both territory and
veillance cameras, alarm systems and reinforcement number of members/supporters. This cold war led
of doors and windows. the clubs to enter into alliances in order to gain
added strength. In Norway, Hells Angels and Coffin
In Norway, the club premises are owned or leased Cheaters have reached an alliance on one side, while
by private limited companies or foundations, often Bandidos and Outlaws have allied on the other
with members holding central positions. A com- side. This consolidation has created a defined front
mon feature of such private limited companies and line within the motorcycle environment. However,
42 Tattoo World in Norway is currently owned and managed by Leif Ivar Kristiansen (“Leifen”), Hells Angels’ President in Norway. The company’s registered business address
is the same as that for the Hells Angels’ premises at Bynesveien100 in Trondheim.
43 House of Pain on the island of Stord and in Arendal is owned by Hells Angels member Vemund Sæterstøl, who is a member of the Oslo chapter.
44 However, the corporate bodies carry a criminal and compensation liability for its activities.
45 Two of the murder victims had no connection to the motorcycle gangs.
behind this frontline, there appears to be a confusion politicians and the media are frequently invited to as possible between themselves and crime, in order are no grounds on which to presume that the clubs
of alliances, breaches of alliances and pragmatic events where the motorcycle gangs demonstrate to reduce the risk of detection. It has therefore condemn this type of behaviour.
solutions. their altruism. become increasingly common to make use of persons In addition to drugs, outlaw motorcycle gangs are
The substantial expansion achieved by the clubs 4.3.3 Age of the motorcycle gangs as an expression outside the club to carry out the primary offence, also mainly connected with crimes involving money
implies that they have to be flexible, and they are of their criminal potential for example persons in the support groups, support collection. It is well known that the money col-
seen to regularly breach their own standards and The one percenter clubs have now survived for half clubs or other criminal groups.50 lectors can be violent so it is best to pay what they
regulations, for example when full members are a century, despite the development of society, the ask. Debt collection can often take place relatively
allowed to move from one club to another. However, efforts of the authorities, competing clubs and com- The one percenter members often act as backers. normally; When the debt collector is known to be a
the fact that Hells Angels members are allowed to peting criminals. The durability of the motorcycle They are extremely security conscious in their role of member of Hells Angels, it is no longer necessary to
transfer to Bandidos and vice versa, does not change gangs shows that they have achieved continuance backer and very rarely make use of electronic means make threats. This type of activity takes place in an
the defined front between the clubs. The clubs, in and stability. The clubs are now well-established of communication. When a member is linked to a environment where the parties involved operate in a
particular Bandidos and the Outlaws, have also within society. Well-established criminal networks criminal act, that act is seen as the criminal project of grey zone between legitimate and illegitimate debt
modified their acceptance requirements and have have a much higher potential for crime than criminal the individual member - and not the club. It there- collection. The claims are often sold on via several
recruited hardcore criminals outside of motorcycle (individual) projects. The Italian and American fore appears that the crime committed by the indivi- parties before ending up with the motorcycle gangs.
gangs. Mafia are examples of this. dual member is a solo project. From a social aspect, it The police very rarely gain knowledge of such cases,
is essential to clarify whether this actually is the case. even if violence is used. The victims are understan-
In practice, this consolidation within the one per- The fact that a criminal network has survived over dably too frightened to incur further violence from
center groups implies a lower risk of open conflict. time inspires newly established groups to adopt the The criminality inflicted on society by motorcycle the motorcycle gang/member if they report the mat-
However, if an open conflict were to occur, the conse- network model for organisation. The new groups gangs - including that committed together with other ter. Parts of the profit gained from debt collection are
quences for society at large could be dramatic, ref. can then benefit from the proven steadfastness and criminal groups - typically comprises drug traffick- most often paid to the club fund.
the bombing in Drammen. adaptability of this organisational model. ing, violence, threats and economic crime.
Criminal damage is also utilised as a means of
4.3.2 Relationship with the media and establishment 4.4 Criminality inflicted on society by motorcycle In general, the motorcycle gangs disassociate them- intimidation. In Norway, there have been examples
of “goodwill” gangs selves from heroin,51 but members can be linked to of damage to vehicles belonging to police officers
The clubs appear to actively promote themselves In Norway, none of the one percenter clubs have the importation, sale and use of marijuana, ampheta- working on cases involving motorcycle gangs. The
in the media in order to generate a positive image been convicted pursuant to section 48a of the Penal mine and cocaine.52 police have found lists of vehicles, police officers and
for the club. They invite persons to open events, for Code regarding corporate penalties. Neither has it It is thought that the clubs’ international network addresses when raiding club premises, which natu-
example the «Factory Party», where they promote been established that the members have represented plays an important role in trafficking of drugs. rally gives cause for concern. This type of contra-
themselves as normal motorcycle enthusiasts, an organised criminal group pursuant to the Penal Experience from investigated drug cases shows intelligence indicates that the club may intend to
receiving the support of pop artists and well-known Code section 60a merely because they are mem- that the drugs sold are often purchased via club make use of this information to their advantage.
catering firms. Since the clubs are normally extre- bers of a motorcycle gang. The clubs aim to - at all organisations. When carrying out intelligence operations targeting
mely closed, such events attract a lot of people and costs - avoid developing a poor reputation by being these clubs, police officers should therefore be aware
receive considerable media coverage. linked to crime. At the same time, two thirds of their One of the most serious sides of the motorcycle that these types of records, under the circumstances,
members have been convicted of crimes. gangs is their systematic and extensive use of can be governed by the Personal Data Act sections
The members also take part in a number of public violence and threats. Their violent profile has been 8 and 9, and that storage of such information in the
events, arriving in full club uniform, in order to Society has to be protected against these gangs, developed over the years, during which members, in club premises may incur the club a criminal liability
present themselves as harmless and responsible by making them responsible for both their clubs the spirit of the club, have acted violently. Violence pursuant to section 48a of the Penal Code.
citizens. During the Stop Violence Action in Oslo and members. The imposition of responsibility on ranges from internal conflicts between members to
Spektrum in 1999, central figures from Bandidos each member for his criminal project, for example, influencing the media53 and those taking part in It appears that members increasingly attempt to hide
attended to provide their support to the event, and drug trafficking, is not particularly challenging court cases54. There are also examples of murders, their criminal activities and that they focus increas-
were photographed together with Prime Minister for the police.46 The greatest challenge is proving originating from crime.55 There are also a number ingly on areas which generate high profits. Drug
at that time, Kjell Magne Bondevik. During the whether the club in whole or in part is responsible of examples to show that the violent profile allows trafficking can generate high gains, but it is when
award ceremony for the music industry in Norway as an enterprise47 for contributing to48 the criminal the clubs to threaten and coerce persons to behave investing the gain that major profit can be earned
(Spellemannsprisen), also in 1999, a central Hells actions of its members, or whether membership in as the clubs dictate. Perhaps the most conspicuous over time. This may explain why the distance bet-
Angels member was asked to award the prize for the itself implies that the person is a part of an organised form of threatening behaviour is when the club ween certain parties active in the financial markets
best rock song. He entered the stage, wearing the criminal group.49 Below, we will highlight a number members appear in court in full uniform.56 There and outlaw motorcycle gangs has narrowed. These
Hells Angels insignia on his back, thereby represen- of circumstances which may be of significance when
ting the entire Hells Angels organisation. the police analyse and prevent this type of crime.
50 For example minority ethnic groups in major cities.
51 The use of heroin may result in exclusion.
Bandidos carry out regular «Toy Runs», where By way of introduction, it is important to specify that 52 Smuggling of 100 kilo amphetamine in September 1998. Two prospects from Hells Angels MC Oslo were convicted. After some time, they became full members. Two supporters were also convicted. A hang-
they collect toys for children in orphanages. Local the motorcycle gangs aim to place as much distance around in Hells Angels Oslo was caught in March 2001 with close to 50 kg of marijuana and a large volume of amphetamine in his home. A member of Hells Angels in Hamar was arrested with 1,000 litres
of spirits in September 2001.
53 Threats against the editors of Ystad Allhanda in Sweden, who had reported the establishment of a Hells Angels chapter. Another example of Hells Angels conduct is the «occupation» of a TV studio after
Hells Angels was presented as a criminal organisation on a panel debate.
54 Ref. Penal Code section 132a.
46 Selv om det må medgis at trusler mot vitner og mindre samarbeidsvillige tiltalte medfører utfordringer for å avdekke sannheten når MC-medlemmer er tiltalt. 55 The bomb attack against Bandidos MC’s club in June 1997 in Drammen, where a passer-by was killed. Murder in Tokke, Telemark, in June 2000. Two persons, one former hang-around and one prospect
47 Jf. straffeloven § 48a. in Hells Angels MC in Stavanger, were convicted of murder. The judgement states that the murder was an internal conflict in connection with selling drugs. One male was found seriously injured after a
48 Jf. læren om fysisk og/eller psykisk medvirkning. kidnapping and severe cruelty, 2 March 2002. The murder of a well-known debt collector in Oslo in December 2000 in the club premises for the Untouchables MC Oslo.
49 Jf. straffeloven § 60a. 56 Examples of such conduct can also be found in other gang-based crime. The Courts Act section 125 allows for exclusion of gang members from the courthouse.
5 Overall threat
strengthened ties open the door to investment and 4.5 Summary Some may claim that the one percenter clubs are With the expansion of the clubs, the competition
money laundering opportunities for the motorcycle How would society view a public limited company not criminals, or that the crimes they commit do for criminal markets and recruitment can only be
clubs, and disloyal servants in the financial markets if the Managing Director, board members and not represent a threat to society. Current motorcy- expected to increase. This presents the risk of open
receive access to the clubs’ international network shareholders were criminals, and where the com- cle gang crime normally involves debt collection by conflict between the clubs and/or other criminals,
and members. To date, no one percenters have been pany made use of its organisation and activities to force, extortion, drug trafficking etc. However, as for example Mafia-like networks from East Europe.
convicted of money laundering in Norway. facilitate criminal actions? Would society distinguish they have become more established within society,
between the company and its members? with their ideology and good organisation, the clubs It is assumed that such open conflict will primarily
Corruption and «political» coercion are utilised have developed a substantial potential for criminal only affect the criminal groups. However, such
by the clubs. The police in the USA, Canada and To a certain degree, the clubs can be treated as acts. In the future, the motorcycle gangs can repre- conflicts could have an impact on society at large, for
England have seized information which substan- individual legal entities,59 ref. the registration of the sent an even greater threat. From such a perspective, example the bombing in Drammen.
tiates the claim that the clubs intend to influence trademark for Hells Angels. However, they are not it is reasonable to fear situations which far exceed
politicians to make beneficial decisions, for example public limited companies or companies with limited the «Nordic MC war» in severity. It is therefore essen- Crimes committed by the motorcycle gangs over
countering proposals for the prohibition of insignia (economic) liability. The clubs are mergers which tial to target our efforts against current motorcycle the years have generated sufficient gain to finance
on jackets, (color prohibition), club premises and the represent the sum of the ideas of the individual gangs, in order to safeguard future society. their lifestyle. The level of crime has now reached
like. members. The club lifestyle is a central aspect such a volume that only a part of the overall gain is
for all members - at least initially. The lifestyle of a Recruitment both in Norway and abroad has been spent, while the rest is invested. There are therefore
In order to recruit disloyal servants among the one percenter implies per definition a breach with substantial, and there is no reason to believe that this sufficient grounds on which to assume that the clubs
police, tax authorities, estate agents or banking the laws and regulations of society in general. And growth will stop. Recruitment to the clubs appears will continue to combine legal and illegal activities in
industry, the clubs appear to make use of so-called even if the individual member does not commit to result from an ongoing power struggle between order to invest profits. The common trend is that the
honey traps.57 Other groups of persons who may criminal actions, he knows that a clear majority the major clubs for members and criminal markets. clubs work on further developing relationships with
be of interest to the motorcycle gangs are doctors, of other «brothers» are bound to commit a crime. The expansion there remains foreseeable. At the legal parties within business and commerce. This
lawyers or weapon makers. He also knows that his membership is supporting same time as the clubs grow, we can identify strengt- type of development safeguards the clubs’ finances,
such activities: He will support his «brother» in all hened relationships between the clubs and other flexibility and position within society. It also implies
Information exists indicating that members have instances and he and the other members make up a criminals, for example ethnic minority gangs. The that the police forces have to extend their efforts to
attempted to fraudulently gain social security bene- network which is utilised by the criminal members. motorcycle gangs’ collaboration with other criminal cover the entire range of activities in which the clubs
fits, including unemployment benefits and sickness When this club lifestyle is combined with criminality, networks and groups makes combating such crime are involved - and not just the individual cases of
allowance using proforma employment in enterpri- the result is ideologically motivated crime, which can all the more difficult. trafficking or violence.
ses owned by «brothers».58 In such an instance, it be extremely dangerous. This type of crime, when
can be beneficial for the members to have access to placed within good organisational boundaries, is The clubs’ utilisation of support networks in order The growth and dispersion of the interests of the
doctor’s certificates. challenging to prevent, partly because it is so difficult to commit crimes implies that more crimes can be clubs may give rise to an increase in internal con-
to gain any influence over the individual member committed than if it were only the clubs who were flicts, which may open the door to the police force
and his environment. behind the criminal actions. At the same time, the and cooperating authorities so they can gain more
networks provide a distance between the clubs and information. By gaining access to an increased level
the primary offences, which makes the clubs less of intelligence, the police will have much more opp-
vulnerable to police efforts. A trend has also emerged ortunity to remain ahead of developments.
57 Ref. for example NRK documentary, Brennpunkt 18 May 2010. whereby the criminal members do not necessarily
58 Swedish police have informed that several of the members in Hells Angels MC Stockholm claim disability allowance. This is thought to be attributed to the fixed monthly
amounts they can claim via such schemes.
involve other «brothers» in the club. This provides an
59 That is as legal persons. even greater distance to the club, and the club is also
less vulnerable should the crime be detected.
6 The police force’s strategic goals and initiatives
Outlaw motorcycle gangs represent a threat to shed sufficient light on the phenomenon so as to
society and must as such be combatted. These efforts allow for initiatives towards legislative amendments.
must focus on the organisation and the networks, not The manual will be updated when required and at
just on the crimes committed by these networks. The least once a year.
main philosophy is as follows: By fighting against the
basic organisation and thus the platform for criminal 6.4 Kripos as coordinator for collaboration
activities, we limit the opportunity to commit crimes regarding motorcycle gangs
- and get away with it. The strategic goals for the Kripos forms the national hub for intelligence on
police force’s efforts are motorcycle gangs, and helps the police forces in
Norway gain contacts abroad. Kripos also possesses
1. to reduce the number of existing outlaw motor- specialised knowledge in Norway regarding outlaw
cycle gangs motorcycle gangs. There is now a requirement to
2. to prevent recruitment further develop the intelligence function carried out
3. to prevent the establishment of new outlaw by Kripos and the organisation’s professional area
motorcycle gangs of responsibility, so that Kripos is better equipped to
keep the police force fully informed. Kripos may pro-
The measures listed in this report are not exhaustive. vide updates on the basis of specific cases, as general
Local analyses may indicate the need to supplement information or in the form of principal documents
these with further measures. such as trend reports and threat analyses.
6.1 Analyses of motorcycle gangs 6.5 Police force collaboration with public and
The police shall pay particular attention to remaining private bodies
fully informed of and analysing the growth of motor- The police force and prosecution authorities should
cycle gangs. If new chapters, clubs or support groups not bear the entire burden of combating outlaw mot-
are established, these shall be analysed. The analysis orcycle gangs. The crimes committed by these gangs
shall explain how the establishment occurred, how affect entire communities. The police force must the-
the police attempted to prevent it and why the police refore extend and strengthen its collaboration with
were not successful in preventing it. The analysis all sectors of society able to take part in such efforts.
shall be submitted to Kripos and the National Police
Directorate. The most obvious and relevant partners for the
police among public bodies are the municipalities.
6.2 Regional collaboration They are involved for example in the establishment
Along with Kripos, the police districts in Oslo, of club premises and in controlling licences to sell
Rogaland and Sør-Trøndelag have worked for a num- alcohol. Experience shows that there are often irre-
ber of years against motorcycle gangs. They have gularities in the identification and build of the gangs’
extensive knowledge of the motorcycle gang pheno- motorcycles, such that the Norwegian Driver and
menon and relevant local situations, and therefore Vehicle Licensing Agency could use such informa-
form a natural starting point for the reinforcement tion during vehicle inspections. The prison service
of collaboration between the police districts. The has custody of motorcycle gang members in jail and
regional collaboration partners shall maintain close serving sentences, and therefore has good access to
contact with Kripos and local personnel. information. The teams working on tax and social
security fraud will be able to provide extensive intel-
6.3 Continuation of the motorcycle manual ligence and reports.
developed by Kripos
In 2006, Kripos completed a manual regarding mot- Voluntary organisations in Hokksund have compiled
orcycle gangs and a manual for patrol cars, as part of a manifesto of values, based on former so-called
the collaboration between police and customs in the Nazi concerts and parades. Norwegian politicians
Nordic countries (PTN). This manual provides a solid are committed to following this manifesto. There
basis for further development. A new manual shall is a majority agreement among Norwegian poli-
provide readers with the knowledge required and an ticians that the establishment of an international
understanding of how the police can best combat the outlaw motorcycle gang goes against this manifesto
motorcycle gangs. The target group for the manual of values. The fact that the inhabitants in an entire
will be all parts of the police force and prosecution municipality stood behind the police and waited for
authorities involved in this field, who need facts and them to take action was decisive for the outcome of
legal knowledge of the fight against outlaw motorcy- the case.
cle gangs. One main goal for the manual is to
Private, law-abiding parties who are in direct contact Second on the list of effective measures which the
with members of outlaw motorcycle gangs are for police can utilise are those which target membership
example banks, insurance companies, contractors of the clubs, for example confiscation of “colors”
and workmen. Cooperation with bars and restau- and driving licences, blocking of access to the club
rants has also provided satisfactory results with the premises63 etc.
introduction of colour prohibition, where club mem-
bers are denied access to bars etc. if they are wearing As seizure claims against criminal members are of
their club uniform. It is a known fact that the clubs significant importance for the police force’s efforts, it
have a practice which dictates that uniforms cannot is essential to track the finances of motorcycle gangs
be taken off voluntarily. as part of intelligence work.64 Seizure prevents the
member in question or the club from profiting from
Even if an outlaw motorcycle gang is not established crime. Furthermore, it is important to intercept
within an individual municipality/region, it is neces- offences which may result in civil actions. By making
sary to introduce the measures required to combat full use of all the instruments provided by legislation,
any future attempts at establishment. The growth of the police force will be able over time to curb the
such clubs over the past decade indicates that it is level of motivation among outlaw members.
wise to be prepared.
Police and legal court cases receive substantial
6.6 Focus on opportunities and not limitations coverage in the media. We see frequent reports on
Prison sentences for members of outlaw motorcycle motorcycle gangs in the media. This is the type of
gangs and their supporters appear to have a limited news which sells, and subjects such as police, legal
individual and general preventative effect. This is a offences, right and wrong attract the interest and
phenomenon which emerges with criminal groups involvement of society at large. By maintaining
with an ideological aspect, such as hate crime and transparency and a high level of professionalism, the
political and religious fundamentalism. police force inspires confidence and trust, providing
an increased sense of safety and stronger bonds bet-
However, measures which are effective are those ween the general public and the police. The police
which attack the clubs’ lifestyle, ideals and moti- force therefore requires a strategic approach to the
vation to commit crime. The consequences of such media, helping ensure the general public receive suf-
actions are very negative for the clubs and their ficient and correct information on crimes committed
lifestyle. At the top of the list of effective measures by motorcycle gangs.
are those which target the network, for example
imposing responsibility on the club or chapter as When key figures from such gangs are identified, the
such60 or on the members because they are mem- police are able to introduce specific countermeasures
bers61. Examples of such measures may be seizure in the form of so-called targeting.
of the «club’s» funds62 and licences to sell alcohol,
or injunctions to move premises, take down fences,
video cameras etc.
7 Evaluation of the report and crime-fighting efforts
A description of the follow-up of this report by the
police districts and special units shall be provided • What have the police done to reach the
in the National Police Directorate’s annual report. strategic goals of the report?
A separate template will be prepared for the above. • What is the assessment of the measures in the
The National Police Directorate will carry out an report to reach these goals?
intermediate and final evaluation, focusing on cen- • How should the report be formatted in order to
tral issues, including the following: strengthen the crime-fighting efforts of the police
• What results have been achieved during the period?
60 Ref. Penal Code section 48a.
61 Ref. Penal Code section 60a.
62 For example, the club’s “Defence Fund”.
63 Ref. for example the Criminal Procedure Act section 222b.
64 www.nrk.no reported on 19 April 2010 that members of Hells Angels are in control of 60 companies, and that every third member/every third hang-around owns his own
company or is a shareholder involved in a corporate entity as managing director or board member..