Pubdate: Sun, 6 Jun 1999
Source: Observer, The (UK)
Copyright: Guardian Media Group plc. 1999
Author: Tony Thompson, Crime Correspondent


The two-year blood feud between the Hell's Angels and the Outcasts has
seen two murders, several shootings, arson attacks and attempted
bombings. It is expected to reach new heights in the next few months,
following a lull during which both gangs are believed to have been
building up their resources.

This weekend Richard 'Stitch' Anderton, a member of the Outcast
Motorcycle Club, was starting a three-year jail sentence. Officers
from the National Crime Squad found a massive haul of ammunition in
his home which they believe was intended to be used as part of an
assault on several properties owned by the Angels.

After a tip-off, armed police stopped Anderton, 36, and his common-law
wife while he was driving his car close to his home in Poole, Dorset.
A loaded Smith & Wesson .45 revolver was found tucked into the
waistband of his trousers and additional rounds were found in his pockets.

Amphetamines, cannabis and Ecstasy were found in his car, along with
scales and self-sealing bags. A search of his flat uncovered more
drugs, hundreds of shotgun cartridges and thousands of rounds of 9mm

Detectives were disturbed to discover large numbers of hollow-point
rounds, which are designed to expand on impact and cause maximum
damage. Such bullets are outlawed under the Geneva Convention because
their effect is so devastating.

Decommissioned weapons including an Uzi sub-machine gun, an AK-47
rifle and a rocket launcher were also recovered. It emerged that
Anderton was the Outcasts' Sergeant-at-Arms and was responsible for
its armoury.

Detectives suspect the guns were purchased with the proceeds of
drug-dealing. Although large quantities of 9mm ammunition were found,
no 9mm weapons were being kept at the property, leading to speculation
that additional weapons may still be in circulation among the gang's
200 or so members.

The dispute between the two gangs is believed to have begun when the
Outcasts tried to absorb a small Hertfordshire club, The Lost Tribe,
in June 1997. Concerned that such a move would make the Outcasts their
equal in numbers, the Angels made the Tribe honorary members.

That November, two members of the Outcasts were arrested in possession
of loaded shotguns, allegedly on their way to confront the Angels.

In January 1998, at the Rockers Reunion in Battersea, which had been
trouble-free for 15 years, up to 20 Hell's Angels were involved in a
brutal attack on two Outcasts.

Angels wearing headset radios helped to identify the victims while
others, working in small groups, carried out the attacks. David
Armstrong, 33, was dragged from his bike and hacked to death with axes
and knives. His friend, Malcolm St Clair, raced to his aid but was
stabbed eight times. Witnesses said the Angels had been calm during
the 'executions' and seemed pleased with what they had done. One was
heard to say: 'I got the bastard. I got him. I did him.'

In March, a fertiliser and petrol bomb was found at the clubhouse of
the Angels' Lea Valley chapter in Bedforshire. There was an attempted
arson attack on a motorcycle shop owned by the Angels. Then two
Outcasts were shot close to their east London clubhouse. Both survived
but refused to co-operate with police.

Last November, a Hell's Angel, Ronald Wait, was jailed for 15 years
for helping to mastermind the Battersea attack which left two members
of the Outcasts dead.

After his arrest, Anderton claimed he had been told the Angels had
drawn up a 'death list' containing the names of several Outcasts who
were to be 'killed on sight'.

Fearing for his life, Anderton moved from Essex to Dorset and armed
himself with the handgun. He claimed the other weapons and the drugs
were merely being stored at his property as it was considered to be

Anderton had previously been a 'prospect' member of the Angels. He
left for reasons unknown and was believed to have been placed on the
'death list' because he was considered a traitor. The two dead men
were also formerly associated with the Angels.

Trouble had been expected to flare at last year's Bulldog Bash, a
biker event run by the Angels which earns them around pounds 500,000
each year. The Outcasts had threatened to bomb it and police had urged
the Angels to cancel the event. It went ahead without trouble, but
detectives believe that both groups, hit by raids which have seen them
lose many of their weapons, are simply rebuilding their resources
before continuing their conflict.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Patrick Henry