News State Victoria News ‘No revival’ of gangland war

‘No revival’ of gangland war

George Williams with police after shots were fired into his home Monday.
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Victoria Police are investigating a possible connection between a police shooting on Tuesday morning and an earlier arson attack and drive-by shooting linked to the Williams gangland family.

But despite the attacks, Victorian Police Association head Ron Iddles said this was not the start of a new gangland war in Melbourne.

It is believed two officers involved in the shooting on Tuesday were searching for suspicious cars after two attacks believed to be connected to the Williams family, Fairfax Media reported.

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In the first of the attacks, a house in Essendon on the same street where slain underworld figure Carl Williams’ ex-wife Roberta Williams lives, was pelted with up to nine molotov cocktails on Sunday.

In a second incident, at about 3.30am Tuesday shots were fired at a former home of Carl Wiliams, where his father George Williams lives, in Katandra Crescent, Broadmeadows.

Carl Williams was killed by a fellow inmate at Barwon Prison in 2010.
Carl Williams was killed by a fellow inmate at Barwon Prison in 2010. Photo: ABC

A short time after the shooting on George Williams’ home, a police divisional van spotted a suspicious four-wheel drive Ford Escape, not far from Roberta Williams’ house, Fairfax Media reported.

The two First Constables followed the Ford Escape, which allegedly travelled to Moonee Ponds.

The driver made a u-turn and a shot was fired directly into the police car, shattering the driver’s side window and entering one of the officer’s heads.

The 31-year-old is lucky to be alive, and left hospital on Wednesday afternoon.

“He is up and about and in good spirits, and is being supported by colleagues, friends and family,” Sergeant Kris Hamilton said.

Mr Iddles told ABC News Breakfast on Wednesday the attacks were concerning, but not a sign of escalating gangland violence.

“We know that earlier on in the week there had been a Molotov cocktail thrown at Roberta’s house and on the night George Williams’ house had been shot,” Mr Iddles said.

“A vehicle fitting the description was the same as what they followed so there may be a connection there.

“I don’t think this is going to spark a gangland war.

“I was there at the time when those were investigated. I think it’s a bit of debris from those times.”

Mr Iddles said there were still people out there who were seeking revenge for Carl Williams’ crimes.

“Carl was involved in several underworld killings and there are people who would still want to, I suppose, cause injury to those that were close to him,” he told ABC News Breakfast.

“We don’t know who the offenders are, but there’s still a criminal element out there who have animosity towards the Williams family.

The burnt out car believed to be involved in the police shooting was found at Coburg North.
The burnt out car believed to be involved in the police shooting was found at Coburg North. Photo: ABC

“I know police visited Roberta and George yesterday, and one of the things would be to quell that down and make sure it doesn’t escalate.”

But he said there were no fears within police command that violence was getting out of hand.

“Not at this stage. We will just have to monitor and see how it progresses in days to come.”

A distraught Ms Williams said she did not know who was behind it all, and was devastated a police officer had been injured.

“All that’s happened is that children have been terrorised and a police officer has been shot doing his job and trying to keep us all safe,’’ she told News Corp.

More than 30 people were killed in Melbourne’s gangland wars from 1998 until Carl Williams died in jail in 2010.

Family friend Paul visited the Williams’ home soon after police left on Tuesday, saying George Williams was trying his best to stay out of the limelight, and since Carl was killed nothing had happened in their street.

“They’re not going to move. They’ve done nothing wrong. They’re just living their life out so, you know, that’s all I can say about it,” Paul said.

– with AAP

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