Victoria Police denies its new anti-gang unit will duplicate the role of existing organised crime taskforces or drain resources from other areas as it tries to tackle gun violence after the attempted assassination of ex-Mongol Suleiman ‘Sam’ Abdulrahim.
Chief Commissioner Shane Patton announced on Friday that police had launched the Viper taskforce to disrupt and dismantle outlaw motorcycle gangs, organised crime networks and street gangs.
Victoria Police already has two separate units which target organised crime groups: the Echo taskforce and the armed crime squad.
Patton said Viper officers would complement their efforts and offer up a mobile workforce, allowing police to be deployed anywhere in the state at short notice, giving the force an “on-tap” resource.
The new taskforce comes after a series of shootings in Melbourne in recent weeks, the most prominent being the brazen daylight attack on former Mongols bikie and professional boxer Abdulrahim, who was shot multiple times in his car as he left a funeral at Fawkner cemetery on Saturday.
Moments later, the two masked shooters carjacked a woman and her four-year-old son to make their getaway. They are still on the run.