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BIKER NEWS: Warrant out for Aussie in Pattaya kidnapping of Hells Angels biker

BIKER NEWS -- CHON BURI – An arrest warrant has been issued for a 26-year-old Australian man for allegedly conspiring with four othe...



BIKER NEWS -- CHON BURI – An arrest warrant has been issued for a 26-year-old Australian man for allegedly conspiring with four others to kidnap an Australian motorcycle gang leader from his home in Pattaya.

The Pattaya Provincial Court on Tuesday approved a local police request to arrest Antonio Bagnato on charges of conspiring toassault and detain 38-year-old Wayne Rodney Schneider, the suspect's reported partner in a Sydney fitness business.

Mr Bagnato, along with four unidentified men, is accused of abducting the former Hells Angels biker from his rented Jomtien Park Villas home in Bang Lamung district.

Mr Bagnato is believed to come from New South Wales, where Mr Schneider hailed from, and is a fellow biker with a residence in Pattaya.

Police said Mr Schneider had been living in Pattaya for a month. He reportedly was invited to share a house by Amad Malkoun, a former leader of Australia's criminal Comancheros biker gang. In April, the Melbourne Herald-Sun reported that Mr Malkoun had become estranged from his gang amid pressure from law enforcement. He had since relocated to Dubai.

Mr Schneider's Hells Angels has since supplanted the Comancheros as Australia's top outlaw gang, the paper said.

Australia's ABC News said Thai police said they were working with Australian law enforcement on the case and had made contact with Mr Schneider's Thai wife, who also is in Dubai.

Pol Col Sukthat Pumpunmuang, superintendent of Pattaya City police, told ABC that Schneider -- who has a long criminal history dating back at least 10 years -- "is on a watchlist for Australian police to follow up ... and also follow up his friends in a gang."

Mr Schneider was arrested six years ago for drug trafficking, obstruction of justice, and involvement in the theft of 5 million baht from a Melbourne casino. In 2007, he was on New South Wales' "most wanted" list for 18 months over the shooting of a bouncer outside the Sapphire Suite nightclub in Kings Cross in 2006.

Police earlier said CCTV cameras at the home were out of order. But a security guard confirmed Mr Bagnato was one of the abductors.

Officers found paraphernalia used for taking crystal methamphetamine inside the house and Thai media photographed two bullet casings and spatters of blood outside.

Pol Maj Gen Aumpon Buarubporn, chief of Chon Buri police, said investigators are searching for Mr Schneider and the suspects but so far have not been able to identify their whereabouts.

Pol Maj Gen Aumpon said based on checking of immigration records officers believed Mr Bagnato is still in Thailand. They also believed Mr Schneider is still alive.

The motive behind the kidnap is not known, but police are working on a theory that the incident may involve a personal conflict between Mr Schneider and other bikers, or a dispute over an illegal drug business.

This article was first published on 1 Dec 2015
Get a copy of Bangkok Post or go to www.bangkokpost.com for more stories.

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Outlaws Bikers News : BIKER NEWS: Warrant out for Aussie in Pattaya kidnapping of Hells Angels biker
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