England

Hells Angels Euro Run: Thirty-four arrested at anniversary event

Mass "ride out" from Pease Pottage to Brighton Image copyright Eddie Mitchell
Image caption Up to 700 bikers had been due to take part in a "ride out" but police said the number was lower

Thirty-four people were arrested as thousands of Hells Angels bikers gathered to commemorate the club's 50th anniversary in the UK.

The arrests were made on suspicion of drugs offences and possession of offensive weapons.

The Hells Angels Euro Run, in Sussex and Surrey, marks the creation of the first branch of the California-based motorcycle club in the UK.

Bikers took part in a mass "ride out" from Pease Pottage to Brighton.

The procession along the A23 began at 14:00 BST under police escort, watched by spectators at the side of the road and on bridges.

Up to 700 bikers had been due to take part, but police said there were fewer participants than expected.

Earlier this week, Surrey and Sussex police were granted powers to stop and search people within a designated area across the two counties in a bid to tackle anti-social behaviour.

A total of 12 people - five German nationals, three Hungarians, one Swiss, one French, one Czech and a Greek - were charged.

Police actions 'justified'

Seven appeared in court on Friday and were given suspended prison sentences, while five more were due to appear in court later.

Three other people remain in custody and the rest were either cautioned or released without charge.

Assistant Chief Constable of Surrey Police Nev Kemp said: "We have been very clear with those attending the Hells Angels event, many from overseas, that we will not tolerate criminal and anti-social behaviour.

"Our activity over the last few days has been about keeping people safe, which is why I put the Section 60 order in place.

"The fact that we have had seven people go through the courts and be sentenced so far, as well as the numerous arrests, has justified our actions.

"This weekend, especially Saturday, sees one of the busiest for both forces in the last 12 months and we continue to work hard to keep our residents and those visiting safe.

"Officers will be out in high numbers so expect to see us on patrol responding and responding quickly to any incidents."

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