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Home linked to Outlaws gang raided

Search in Lakeside follows busts, indictments in ’12

– A house owned by a man associated with the Outlaws motorcycle gang was raided by the FBI Friday, officials said.

FBI agents served a warrant early Friday at 1229 Columbia Ave., near the corner of Columbia and Crescent avenues.

David Crawford, the FBI’s supervisory senior resident agent in Fort Wayne, confirmed his agency was conducting an investigation at the Columbia Avenue address.

No additional information about the search was immediately available.

According to Allen County property records, the two-story home belongs to Anthony P. Lupica.

Lupica is listed as president and incorporator of the Fraternal Order of the Fort Wayne Outlaws Inc., according to the Indiana Secretary of State’s Office.

The international motorcycle club, which advertises itself proudly as one of the “1%” of motorcycle clubs that cause trouble, has often been the target of federal investigations.

Last July, 42 people connected with the Outlaws motorcycle gang were arrested on charges of drug trafficking, extortion, money laundering, witness tampering and illegal gambling.

Steve A. Reynolds, 38, of Fort Wayne was among those arrested.

Federal agents and law enforcement officers with the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force raided two locations simultaneously – the Outlaw’s clubhouse, a two-story black brick building at 1202 W. Main St., and a house a few blocks away in the 1200 block of Elm Street.

After that raid, the signs had been stripped from the West Main Street building and it appeared to be closed. Signs have returned, and a man was seen stocking the clubhouse with cases of beer last week.

In January, Reynolds pleaded guilty to racketeering and extortion for his activities in the gang.

In February, U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Walton-Pratt sentenced Reynolds to 70 months in prison and five years on supervised release.

Dax Shephard, 42, of Fort Wayne was also arrested in connection with the gang’s activities in Fort Wayne and Indianapolis after an investigation by the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force

The case against Shephard is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.

Three members of the club – William “Jason” Elston, Bruce “Big Bruce” Wendel and Danny “Milky” Neace – were indicted in 2007 by a federal grand jury in Detroit as part of a larger investigation.

Those men pleaded guilty to federal assault charges, stemming from a 2006 fight with rival Hells Angels at a South Bend swap meet and a 2006 attack on a Fort Wayne man outside a local restaurant.

jcrothers@jg.net

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