Monday, January 18, 2021

Lawyer pleads guilty to laundering money for Australia’s Comancheros Motorcycle Club

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A lawyer has pleaded guilty to money laundering transactions which allegedly aided the Comancheros Motorcycle Club.

The 41-year-old can now be named as Andrew Simpson, after his name suppression was dropped on Wednesday, at the High Court at Auckland in front of Justice Simon Moore.

He was arrested following a series of raids across Auckland in April, which saw more than $3.7 million in assets seized along with luxury cars, motorcycles, luxury luggage and jewellery.

On Wednesday, Simpson pleaded guilty 13 counts of money laundering totaling more than $2.4 million.

The alleged vice-president of the Comancheros, Tyson Daniels, also pleaded guilty to participating in an organised crime group and nine counts of money laundering.

Daniels was remanded in custody and Simpson was released on bail until sentencing on February 25.

On Wednesday, Justice Moore said while he would remand Simpson on bail until sentencing, a sentence of home detention “was far from assured” as the offending was “reasonably serious”.

Simpson’s lawyer, Guyon Foley previously told the court the man provided a written undertaking to the Law Society that he would not practice while facing the charges.

A media personality, an accountant and Comanchero President Pasilika Naufahu, will go on trial alongside Jarome Fonua, Connor Michael Tamati Clausen, Vetekina Naufahu facing a raft of charges in September next year.

COMANCHERO FACTS

– The Comanchero Motorcycle Club was formed by William George “Jock” Ross, a Scottish immigrant, in Sydney in 1968.

– Ross chose the name after seeing the John Wayne film The Comancheros.

– In 1982, a second chapter was formed by Anthony Mark “Snoddy” Spencer. When visiting the United States, Spencer met members of the Texan motorcycle club, the Bandidos, and the two gangs became allies.

– The Bandidos eventually patched-over the second Comanchero chapter to become the Bandidos’ first Australian chapter.

– The Comanchero and Bandidos are now rivals and, in 1984, the two clubs were involved in the Milperra massacre in Sydney, a shoot-out which left seven people dead, including four Comancheros, two Bandidos, and a 14-year-old bystander.

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