7 March, 2015. 11:00
CLANCY OVERELL | Editor | Contact
Hardened country boys are the new face of Queensland’s bikie plague, with many young farmers being recruited by criminal gangs to help keep their operations afloat while patched members face unprecedented police pressure.
It appears that criminal bikie gangs have become so fearful of the extra police presence and powers on the Gold Coast that they have taken to recruiting Queensland’s Outback for drought-stricken farmers who don’t shy from a “stink”.
Naturally aggressive men, with little income due to a record-breaking dry-patch in Western farming communities, are being recruited by the thousands after years of “freelancing’’ in indiscriminate pub-fights while drinking away their misery in outback pubs.
One gang in particular, is being closely monitored by Queensland police due to their growing profile in one of the countries most remote towns, where it has been given the title “Queensland’s most dangerous bikie club”.
The Betoota Brotherhood, an extremely violent motorcycle club made up of starving farmers, disadvantaged Aboriginal people and dispossessed members of once-powerful Gold Coast gangs – is now the leading criminal organisation behind cattle theft and high-stakes train robberies in Outback Australia.
Desmond*, a spokesperson from inside the gang, has spoken to the Advocate today about why the outlaw life appeals to so many young men who were originally destined for a torturous life on the land.
“These boys never had anything given to them. They worked cattle and sheep for a living… But with lack of rain things are hard enough. Let alone when these bleeding hearts from the city trying to send them broke with this animal cruelty shit,” says Desmond*, who asked to not use his real name.
“If you pair a ten year drought with these tree-hugging restrictions on live cattle export and sheep mulesing, it undermines a man’s entire existence. I don’t blame the poor pricks for choosing a life of crime,”
“They tried to live an honourable life. But were constantly the butt of political correctness and green tape. Now they are taking back what was taken from them… one train-load of wealthy tourists at a time”
Desmond says that the bikie infiltration of Outback Queensland has been a long time coming, with not just farmers but also the disadvantaged Aboriginal men of regional Australia being targeted for recruitment.
With Aboriginal Australians and farmers each representing roughly 2.2% of the Australian population, both communities have long been the victims of a bipartisan government that is not interested in seeing them do well.
It now appears their abilities are being utilised and appreciated elsewhere – and the bikie gangs are rubbing there hands with glee.
Desmond states that both communities are a perfect inclusion into The Betoota Brotherhood.
“These blokes in the bush have a natural athleticism, natural horsemanship and an inherit sense of camaraderie. It is the perfect inclusion for any motorcycle club,”
“The Murris (Aboriginal men) know the bush back to front, the whitefellas know the fence-lines back to front. Sometimes we get a farmer who is also Aboriginal… that’s even better.
“We just teach them how to rob and steal. I doubt the Newman government could have ever expected this. The old-timers are stoked to see so much interest being shown from the younger blokes. It’s pretty nostalgic to see these blokes carrying out train-robberies on horseback”
It is believed the unstoppable force that is the Betoota Brotherhood has robbed up to sixteen trains in the last six months – including the famous Ghan, Indian-Pacific, Sunlander as well as all forms of coal and copper transport.
“Tourism is a thriving industry in the bush. Particularly for us. There’s nothing like a train full of elderly tourists covered in jewellery. The truckies are a bit harder – they are usually armed”
Aside from train-robberies and cattle-rustling (theft), the Betoota Brotherhood has also made a large amount of money selling merchandise on their online store. A world-first for Outlaw motorcycle clubs.
It is believed that the new Queensland Government is hesitant about prosecuting members of the Brotherhood, largely due to the fact that Labor “has never given a fuck about the bush”.
A spokesperson from the premier’s office told the Advocate that Outback crime is not a huge priority for Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk
“So long as the coastal regions are bikie-free, there is no need to pursue criminal motorcycle gangs. We have always been more concerned about the tourists and precious inner-city trendies being exposed to the gangs. If the Betoota Brotherhood isn’t a problem for them, it isn’t a problem for Queensland “
The Betoota Brotherhood has stated that unlike most motorcycle gangs, they welcome the public to wear their “patches” or t-shirts. Limited stock is available for all non-members at their online store, Betoota Outfitters.