Monday, August 24, 2015

Canada Hells Angels under pressure?

From its base in California the Angels reach around the world and, in Canada, is the dominant club by a wide margin. It currently boasts 31 active chapters and close to 400 members on the streets. That dominance does not mean a monopoly.

Today, the Angels face more competition than they have in years. In recent months, notorious biker clubs from Europe, the United States and Australia — all with strong, international organizations and a history of violence and crime — have established new chapters in Canada. This spring the Satudarah Motorcycle Club, a Dutch-based group with a violent reputation in Europe, unveiled a surprise Canadian chapter in Toronto.
Satudarah offer a twist, being an overtly bi-racial group. (The dominant 1% clubs are vastly white.) The racial mix is reflected in its logo: a black and a white warrior, back to back wearing the same headdress.

Satudarah cause concern for police because of their reputation for violence. Since their 1990 launch in the Netherlands, tension between the Satudarah and the Angels has been widely reported.
On Nov. 8, 2014, three chapters of the Red Devils — formed in 1948 in Hamilton, making it the oldest in Canada — patched over to join the Bacchus Motorcycle Club. Overnight, it became the second largest in Canada, with nine chapters and about 100 members.
The Rebels Motorcycle Club, the largest club in Australia with chapters in Europe and the United States, formed three chapters in Canada last summer: in Stratford, Ont., the Vancouver area and Edmonton.
The Vagos Motorcycle Club formed a chapter in Peterborough in 2012. In February some members defected to the Outlaws Motorcycle Club. The former Vagos may even have formed a new Outlaws chapter. The presence of Outlaws, the Angels’ oldest rivals — is aggravating for the larger club.