Sweden grapples with rise of biker gangs

"These people are not stupid. They can read the law, they can read the newspapers and they use the weaknesses they see. When you can threaten the life of someone's small child and only get a year in prison for it, it is easy to be a criminal."

By Ivar Ekman Published: July 9, 2007

STOCKHOLM: Three and a half years after first receiving threats from members of the Bandidos motorcycle gang at his Iranian restaurant in Goteborg, Massoud Garakoei lives in fear.

Biker gangs like the Bandidos, the Hell's Angels and the Outlaws have grown rapidly in recent years, the Swedish police say. The gangs engage in extortion and drug running, among other criminal activities.

When he was targeted, Garakoei, 43, who was born in Iran but is now a Swedish citizen, did what most people threatened by the gangs choose not to do. He went to the police, denounced the extortionists and testified in court.

The result, he said, has been three years of "life as catastrophe and hell" - his car torched, his two small children threatened and his finances in tatters.

Is this what is coming to Hudson?

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