Three senior bikies have been charged over the alleged extortion of a shopkeeper in Sydney’s north-west.
NSW Police said its Raptor Squad began investigating the alleged extortion by the three Finks members in April.
Police said earlier in 2021 a 45-year-old Riverstone shopkeeper loaned another man more than $11,000 in exchange for jewellery, a motorcycle and a boat.
It’s alleged the three Finks members approached the shopkeeper on April 28, threatened him and demanded the loaned items.
Raptor Squad members executed seven search warrants at homes in Chatswood, North Richmond, North St Marys, Tregear, Bidwell, Riverstone, and Raymond Terrace yesterday.
Police seized knuckledusters, 19 explosives, two firearms, a motorcycle engine, electronic devices, outlaw motorcycle gang (OMCG) clothing and a small amount of cannabis and steroids.
The three men, aged 25, 26 and 29, were denied bail.
They have been charged with a range of extortion-related offences.
The three men who were charged are believed to be the president, vice-president and the sergeant-at-arms of the Finks.
Police will allege the 25-year-old who was loaned money from the shopkeeper was removed from the Finks clubhouse over an ‘internal dispute’.
It’s alleged the three men extorted the shopkeeper to “recover money” they believed was owed to the club.
Detective Superintendent Jason Weinstein said the reasons why the 25-year-old was removed from the Finks is unclear at the moment.
“The reality is, he left, there was a demand of money by the OMCG upon that individual, allegedly as part of the ‘terms of contract or employment’ for lack of a better word,” he said.
“Upon exiting the group, there is a belief they’re required to pay an exit fee … that’s where the dispute came in about the property.”
Police are investigating the alleged physical assault of the shopkeeper.
“He’s certainly an innocent individual that was running a lawful business, a business that takes items from members of the public for cash or otherwise.
“He was caught up in something that had nothing to do with him.”
Further people are expected to be charged.