Public Prosecution Service requests ban on No Surrender

The National Public Prosecutors' Office (OM) asked the District Court Noord-Nederland on Thursday 6 September to ban No Surrender and related chapters and brotherhoods, and to officially disband the association. The request was filed with the civil court in Assen because one of the few official chapters of No Surrender is located in Emmen.

According to the Public Prosecution No Surrender belongs to one of the so-called outlaw motorcycle gangs (OMG), the clubs that advertise themselves as the 1%-clubs. That term is used by several motorcycle clubs as an honorary nickname and historically symbolizes bikers who misbehave. Earlier, the Public Prosecution requested a ban for similar clubs: such as the Bandidos, Satudarah, Hells Angels and the Brotherhood Catervarius. Bandidos (who appealed against the ruling), Satudarah and Catervarius (no appeal) have been banned in the meantime.

According to the Public Prosecution these clubs represent a threat to public order. They cultivate a violent image and use that for intimidation and extortion. In addition, the committee members (together with the members) of No Surrender are structurally involved in criminal activities including drug trafficking, assault, intimidation and extortion. The organisation, structure, image and chain of command of the club are being used to ease and facilitate the criminal acts. Also within the clubs members who misbehave, in the opinion of those in charge, or harm the club are threatened with violence and assaulted and they have to pay when they are thrown out.

Substantiation application: violence and other offences

In support of the application, the Public Prosecution submitted a file of many hundreds of pages to the court which includes descriptions of the offences of the club and its (committee)members.

No Surrender was formed after Klaas O. from Brabant had turned his back on Satudarah which was banned earlier this year. This was in 2013 (complete with minutes of the meeting). In order to set the proper image in one go, he approached, among others, three people from Amsterdam to become prominent club members, among whom Willem Holleeder. It was already known at the time that the club was by no means aimed at touring by motorbike. A wiretapped conversation is known in which the people from Amsterdam ask one another whether they can actually ride a motorbike. One of them replies: “I can’t even drive a scooter”. Together with Klaas O. many dozens of co-members left Satudarah. In the North of the Netherlands complete sub chapters turned their backs on the originally Moluccan club as well.

In the meantime, all leaders from 2013 and 2014 are locked up or are prosecuted for committed acts of violence, whether or not as a club. Over the years (former) members and the club itself have been linked to drug trafficking and arms trade, but also to liquidations, shootings, drug rip-offs and assaults (whether or not of co-members, governments and media). For example, a member was beaten up by the own brothers during a funeral. In the subsequent investigation almost 30 kilos of cocaine and speed was found at one of the suspects – one of the leaders of the club – which he had hidden at his ex-wife’s and child together with a firearm. This illustrates how No Surrender tries to mislead the de outside world to hide its true club activities, says the National Public Prosecutors' Office.

Furthermore, the club has a tight chain of command, just like other OMGs. Members who are thrown out, have a very hard time, but are also expected to shut up about the club. They are also expected to listen to “more senior” members in the association and to perform their assignments unopposed. The sub chapters or brotherhoods sometimes have different names, but according to the website they do form part of the – now international – club.

Earlier measures and applications against motorcycle gangs

In addition to the various criminal cases pending against individual (former) members, administrative measures in various Dutch municipalities have already resulted in CCTV monitoring, closure of residences and cafés, cancellation of public events and emergency orders. The last few years, the public administration and the police have urged many times that motorcycle clubs such as No Surrender be banned. The Public Prosecution is also of the opinion that a less far-reaching alternative than a total ban is not available. There are not just a couple of isolated incidents, but there is a club culture of lawlessness and violence. That necessitates a ban in order to end the serious threat which emanates from the organisation.