Devil's Army clubhouse, affiliated with Hells Angels near Langford school
Motorcycle club is affilated with the Hells Angels, say experts
The mayor of Langford, B.C., says the city could use zoning laws to shut down a new motorcycle clubhouse that recently opened near Spencer Middle School.
The Devil's Army biker clubhouse opened at 2775 Spencer Road this week. It features large signs with the number 41, the club's symbol.
The number 41 comes from the initials for the gang's name, with the letters D and A coming fourth and first in the alphabet. Similarly the Hells Angels use the number 81 for their businesses, according to police.
SFU criminologist Rob Gordon says the group is associated with the Hells Angels. The gang's main clubhouse is in Campbell River.
West Shore RCMP Const. Alex Berube said they are watching closely, but have no evidence any criminal activity is happening inside.
Zoning out the clubhouse
Mayor Stew Young said the city's lawyers have advised the clubhouse isn't permitted under the property's current zoning, which allows for uses from veterinary hospitals to gas stations, but not motorcycle gang clubhouses.
"They would have to come in for a rezoning, and because of the proximity to a school,I can tell you I don't think council would approve that. Even if they prove to us that they are not a criminal gang, it's not the appropriate place for it."
The city's likely next step is to apply for a court injunction to close the clubhouse, he said.
"If they don't bring it into compliance, obviously then there is court action."
Gordon said that's probably the best the city can do, noting other B.C. municipalities have used bylaw or business licensing rules to help run biker clubs out of town.
School district officials say police have advised them that students and staff aren't in danger.