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Germany

Three German Biker Gang Members Sent to Jail

Three German Hell's Angels gang members will go to jail for the assault and robbery of rival gang members. The case is the largest of its kind in Germany.

Torso of man wearing Banditos shirt

Germany is getting its share of biker gang wars

Besides the three Hell's Angels members who will face jail, an additional 11 gang members were handed down suspended sentences on Tuesday, Dec. 16.

The trial, which took place in the northern German city of Hanover under heavy security, is considered the largest Germany has ever seen.

On the second day of the trial, defendents reached a plea bargain deal with prosecutors on charges of assaulting and robbing members of a rival gang.

Behind bars

Rocker Prozess Hell's Angels Hannover

Ein Mitglied der Rockergruppe Hell's Angels wird am Montag, 15. Dezember 2008, ins Landgericht Hannover gefuehrt. 14 Mitglieder der Rockergruppe stehen wegen eines Ueberfalls mit Koerperverletzung auf fuenf Mitglieder des verfeindeten Clubs Bandidos im Maerz 2006 vor Gericht.(AP Photo/Joerg Sarbach) ---A member of the Hell's Angels is lead into the district court in Hanover, Germany, Monday, Dec. 15, 2008. 14 members of the Hell's Angels gang are accused of an attac of five Bandidos in March 2006.(AP Photo/Joerg Sarbach)

Three of the accused received respectively 34, 32, and 30-month prison sentences, AFP news agency reported, while the 11 others were handed two-year suspended prison sentences.

The gang members were accused of raiding the headquarters of a rival gang, the Bandidos, in the town of Stuhr in March 2006, brutally beating five rival gang members and stealing money and a laptop computer, the court found.

Growing menace?

Earlier this year, the Interior Ministry in the southern state of Bavaria warned the Hell's Angels were extending their sphere of influence into southern Germany.

The motorcycle group, which has been linked to organized crime in many countries, has long been established in northern Europe.

The Hell's Angels have in the past been linked to dealing in illegal drugs and arms and to prostitution, protection rackets and money-laundering. The ministry said southern Germany was of increasing interest to the gang because of drug routes running through south-eastern Europe and the Balkans.

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