Monday, 12 March 2012

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Alleged Quebec Hells Angels member arrested in Panama

 

Quebec fugitive -- and alleged member of the Hells Angels -- who is wanted on murder charges has been arrested in Panama, local media reports say. Michel Smith, 49, who was linked to Quebec's deadly biker war in the 1990s, was reportedly arrested Friday. Smith -- whose nickname is "animal" -- has been on the run since 2009. He was taken into custody by local police in the tourist area of Playa Coronado on the Pacific Ocean coast, according to local reports. The reports said he had been under surveillance for about two months before his arrest. Smith faces 29 charges, including 22 counts of murder. Police in Canada had not confirmed the news as late Sunday night. Smith is to be extradited back to Canada, police officials in Panama said in a news release. Smith has long been alleged to be among the top men affiliated with the Hells Angels when it was at war with the Rock Machine biker gang in the 1990s and early 2000s. The gang war killed more than 150 people. While most of the victims were members of the rival gangs and their affiliates, two prison guards and an 11-year old boy -- a bystander -- also died. An RCMP warrant describes Smith as 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighing 210 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes.

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