News Item: Tories consider opening up definition of terrorist group to include Hells Angels
(Category: Biker News)
Posted by
Wednesday 21 June 2006 - 13:19:50

The Hells Angels could feel the sting of anti-terrorism laws if the Conservative government moves to loosen the definition of terrorism.

Justice Minister Vic Toews told a Senate committee last week he was considering deleting a clause in the law that defines terrorism as being motivated by religious, political or ideological goals.

The move would likely bring the RCMP hammer down on the Hells Angels. RCMP Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli told a Senate committee in 2005 that the clause created a "limitation" for the police. He singled out the Hells Angels as an organization they would target if the clause was dropped.

"If we did not have that reference, I could charge anybody involved in organized crime, such as the Hells Angels, under the same (law). That reference actually limits our ability to intervene in this area," said Zaccardelli, according to a May 9 transcript from the special Senate committee on the Anti-terrorism Act.

VIOLENCE IN 1990S

During the bloody biker wars in the 1990s, the Hells Angels launched a war of terror against Quebec authorities, killing prison guards and shooting journalists.

Some security experts believe that should have been enough to classify the notorious winged-skull gang as a terrorist group.

Ottawa South Liberal MP David McGuinty has called on the Commons sub-committee studying the anti-terrorism law to explore the inclusion of the Hells Angels as a terrorist group. McGuinty said he wondered whether Toews was spouting hot air, but added the Liberals would explore the issue if it came forward.

University of Ottawa security expert Michael Kempa said the Hells Angels had likely crossed the terrorism line, but it was important to keep a distinction between organized crime and terrorism.

ACTIVIST GROUPS

"You are talking about extreme legal enforcement powers to combat organized crime of the conventional variety," said Kempa, who also said groups that use civil disobedience to make their points would also be ensnared.

"The legislation could become so broad it could be used against anti-corporate or anti-pharmaceutical groups."
[Submitted by Michigan Mike]


This news item is from White Trash Networks
( http://www.bikernews.org/wtn/news.php?extend.741 )