4 Mar 2011

Gangs 'free to wear patches again'

8:17 am on 4 March 2011

A lawyer for the Hells Angels gang says a court decision means gang members can display their patches again in Whanganui.

The gang had asked the High Court to revoke a local bylaw forbidding anyone from showing symbols of membership or support for a gang in public.

It argued that the law requires such a bylaw to pinpoint a specific place but Whanganui's ban encompasses the whole city and beyond and should therefore be revoked.

Justice Clifford upheld the complaint, saying the bylaw falls outside the intention of the Prohibition of Gang Insignia Act.

Hells Angels lawyer Steven Rollo says this means that gang members can freely wear their gear in public once more.

Whanganui Mayor Annette Main says the council will now consider going to the Court of Appeal.