24 hours after a series of simultaneous raids on a biker gang in St. Catharines and Niagara police were showing off what they found. It includes $18-million worth of marijuana, cocaine, heroin and a stash of high powered weapons. That and much more was the result of “Project Resurgence.” As Lauran Sabourin reports, it was a massive bust that took down the “Black Pistons” and “Outlaws” motorcycle gang members in St. Catharines and police say it put a dent in drug trafficking across Southern Ontario.
150 charges, 31 arrests including “Black Pistons” ring leader Randy McGean. McGean’s 24-year old wife Caitlin was also arrested, and put into a police cruiser outside the couple’s St. Catharines home. Nine of those charged are Black Pistons biker gang members. Their clubhouse at 80 Page Street was also raided. 220 police officers from forces across Southern Ontario were involved. Staff Sergeant Shawn Clarkson of the Niagara Regional Police: “It is our belief that the Black Pistons organization would have been a full patch Outlaws chapter by the end of November.”
This is only some of the evidence seized in Wednesday morning’s raids on 30 locations across Niagara. Cocaine, heroin, marijuana, cash. And the most disturbing find, an AK-47 type assault rifle and Mach 10, 45 calibre automatic weapon, that came with prohibited over capacity clips. These were used for intimidation. S.Sgt. Clarkson: But once you put them in their hands, you don’t know what’s going to happen. It’s all about intimidation. That kind of weaponry helps. We’re glad to get them off the street.”
This investigation was sparked by the St. Catharines Street Crime Unit. Since January, they were noticing drug trafficking and home invasions that had the mark of an Outlaws motorcycle gang.”
Police say outlaw bikers are into cocaine and heroin dealing, extortion theft and prostitution.
Niagara Regional Police Chief Jeff McGuire: “Outlaw motorcycle gangs, criminal organizations are not welcome here. You never will be, you never have been.'”
A number of years ago the Outlaws clubhouse in St. Catharines was seized and destroyed. The Hell’s Angels clubhouse in Welland was seized. Its leaders imprisoned.
Now with this weeks raids and arrests, police believe they’ve squashed the Black Pistons, and ultimately the outlaws attempts, to gain a foothold in the region.