SOUTH central Melbourne became more like South Central Los Angeles on Saturday as rioters swept through the CBD terrifying locals and tourists alike.
Havoc descended on Federation Square with metal chairs from the city’s famous Brunetti’s cafe used as weapons on nearby Swanston St, as gang members fought with both the police and among themselves.
But these weren’t members of Melbourne’s notorious crime families, as depicted in Underbelly, or even bikie gangs asserting their dominance. But rather young people, some no more than 12 years of age, from hitherto little known gangs living out their dreams of a “Fast and the Furious” lifestyle.
Police say the primary gang had been under surveillance for months, accused of breaking into homes, stealing cars and even the tragic death of a mum-of two late last year.
While a Salvation Army officer with knowledge of the gangs told news.com.au the culprits “don’t care” about the concerns their actions cause, and that a fear of being a labelled racist meant little effort was being done to tackle the gangs whose members predominantly hail from eastern Africa but also the Middle East and the South Pacific.
According to the UN Population Prospects forecast, there are going to be a lot more Africans from where those came from.