Switzerland biker brawl: Gangs clash with police ahead of trial in Bern

The Local (news@thelocal.com)
The Local ([email protected]) • 30 May, 2022 Updated Mon 30 May 2022 14:26 CEST
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Members of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle club ride their bikes across London Bridge on March 26, 2022. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP)

Police had to use water cannons to separate two rival groups of bike gangs coming to Bern as a month-long trial began.

Police had to use water cannons to separate two rival groups of bike gangs coming to Bern as a month-long trial began.

Swiss police had to resort to using water cannons and rubber bullets to keep two rival biker gangs apart on Monday, May 30th, in Bern, Swiss media reported.

Around 200 members of the gangs threw stones and bottles at each other while they waited in front of the court, where a month-long trial on a 2019 violent clash is set to start. Several men from Hells Angels and Bandidos gangs travelled to the Swiss capital to follow the court proceedings.

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In 2019, a fight between both groups took place on the outskirts of Bern, with numerous injuries reported, including three serious. At the time, police made arrests and seized weapons, including an assault rifle, pistols, knives, and machetes.

The brawl began after fans of the Bandidos motorcycle club allegedly wanted to open a clubhouse in the area. Hells Angels members considered that a provocation and drove with an "associate" group, Broncos, to the region where the fighting took place.

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Now, 22 men are on trial for taking part in the violence. Two face accusations, including attempted intentional homicide, after shots were fired. One man stands accused of grievous bodily harm.

A verdict is expected on June 30th.

The Swiss biker scene

According to SRF, there are currently 200 members of Hells Angels in Switzerland, with "even more" candidates looking for membership. The second-largest group is Bandidos, with some 40 active members.

Other smaller gangs are also present in the country.

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The trial comes as another bike-related fight shocked Switzerland over the weekend, 20min reported. At least four shots were fired in a bar in Geneva after an altercation between Hells Angels and Bandidos groups. Nobody was injured, and the police are investigating the case.

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