– A secret meeting of building industry bosses has raised concerns that bikies employed as labourers on Victorian building sites are selling illegal drugs.
Police were told of organised trafficking of “ice” on building sites at the high-level meeting in May.
The allegations of bikie infiltration of the highly-paid construction industry were discussed at the confidential meeting between Detective Superintendent Peter De Santo, the head of Victoria Police’s anti-bikie Echo Taskforce, and a group of leading Melbourne builders.
Superintendent De Santo warned builders that members of the Comanchero, Hells Angels and the Finks gangs were working in the industry.
“Why did I speak to that group of people? It was to alert them that that they have these people working in their industry,” he said.
The Master Builders Association of Victoria has warned that criminal activity in the building industry was at the highest levels seen in the past 20 years.
A building industry source who spoke to the Herald Sun on condition of anonymity for fear for his safety, said that bikies’ alleged drug trafficking was discussed at the informal dinner in late May.
He said “the movement of drugs in the industry” was a key part of the meeting.
Superintendent De Santo confirmed he attended the meeting with builders in an interview with the Herald Sun.
He said outlaw motorcycle club gang members had taken on legitimate jobs in the building industry.
“A lot of them are…employed and they work in the trade industry,” he said.
“What I would say about the Comanchero is that they’ve declare themselves as an OMCG (Outlaw Motorcycle Gang). The likes of the Comanchero, the Finks, the Hells Angels, they’re the one per cent batch.”
Superintendent De Santo said he had not had direct reports about bikies dealing drugs on building sites, but confirmed the issue of drug-taking in the industry was discussed at the meeting.
He also raised concerns about contractors using bikies to collect debts.
MBAV executive director Brian Welch did not attend the dinner. He declined to comment on what was discussed, but said he had grave concerns about bikies in the industry.
“It worries me that it’s there, some business owners have left the industry because they have felt threatened,” he said.
“The criminal element is greater in the building industry than at any time that it was in the 20 years I have been associated.”
CFMEU spokeswoman Jeana Vithoulkas said: “For over 20 years, the CFMEU has been proactive assisting workers with drugs and alcohol issues through a range of activities and programs. We have said on numerous occasions that if anyone has any evidence of illegal activity in the building industry they should go to the police.” – Stephen Drill


About Jumpin' Jack Cash

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