Hells Angels at 40: Criminal convictions and clubhouse seizures mark the bikers celebratory year in B.C.
Back in 1989, B.C.’s then tourism minister welcomed Hells Angels from around the world to a giant party organized by the Nanaimo chapter, telling the local paper that “money is money” and that biker cash was as good as any.
More than three decades later, the provincial government has just seized the Nanaimo clubhouse, along with two other Hells Angels properties in Kelowna and East Vancouver, after a historic court ruling last month that was 15 years in the making.
They also pointed out how many members and associates of the three chapters “had in the past committed serious crimes” including manslaughter, extortion, drug trafficking and possession of restricted firearms.
The titles for the three clubhouses were transferred to the B.C. government on March 17, property records show — 75 years to the day the Hells Angels were founded in California. B.C. Hells Angels are expected to ask the Supreme Court of Canada to hear an appeal of the clubhouse ruling. They have until April 17 to file their application.
Club spokesman Rick Ciarniello, the oldest Angel in B.C. at 78, did not respond to a request for comment. A lawyer involved in the case also declined to comment.
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