An alleged bikie associate was allowed to leave Australia on a tourist passport despite being a chief suspect in the bloody death of a rival gang member.
An alleged Gold Coast bikie associate was allowed to leave Australia despite being a chief suspect in the stabbing death of a rival gang member.
Wade Yates-Taui, 22, was arrested on the outskirts of Los Angeles at the weekend wearing a Mongols jumper.
Homicide Investigation Unit Detective Superintendent Steve Holahan said police allowed the alleged Mongols associate to leave Australia on a tourist passport several months ago, after alerting the Australian Federal Police.
“We were made aware that he was leaving,” he told reporters on Tuesday in Brisbane.
“At that point in time, our investigation wasn’t at a stage where we wanted to take any overt action.”
Acting Detective Superintendent Brendan Smith, from the anti-bikies Taskforce Maxima, said the investigation into the stabbing death of Bandidos associate Max Waller, 28, last year was quite complex and “may seem unusual to a member of the public”.
Police expect to arrest another two Mongols associates in southeast Queensland over Waller’s stabbing death in front of a Broadbeach holiday complex in June 2013.
“I envisage they’ll be (arrested) in the next few weeks,” Det Supt Holahan said.
“Hopefully, that will be in Brisbane.”
Yates-Taui has 60 days to appeal against his extradition, and has already appeared in a Los Angles court.
The US Marshal service arrested him in California, with Det Supt Holahan expecting him back in Australia within a month if he doesn’t contest his extradition.
Yates-Taui did not put up a fight when he was arrested, he added.
Supt Smith said he switched from the Finks to the Mongols and attended social events with the Mongols in the US.
“There’s evidence showing him in full colours of Mongols Australia,” he said.
He was arrested wearing a jumper: “Mongols forever, forever, Mongols.”
Yates-Taui faces being charged with unlawful killing.