Australia - Criminals may be using a bikie turf war as a 'smokescreen' to cover their own territorial disputes and revenge attacks, Sydney police say.
Gang squad commander Detective Superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis' comments came after a 19-year-old man was hit in the neck during a targeted shooting on Tuesday night.
This attack followed the fatal shootings of two bikie associates in separate incidents last week.
"We have information that maybe other individuals who are involved in territorial disputes or other personal disputes may be using this particular conflict as a smoke screen," he told reporters on Wednesday.
Det Katsogiannis said the Tuesday evening attack at Bexley was targeted and officers were investigating possible links between the victim and bikie gangs.
Detectives are also looking for connections between the three recent shootings.
On Wednesday police arrested a high-ranking Hells Angel member and seized drugs, a gun, a fake bomb and ammunition during searches on 13 bikie properties across Sydney.
During dawn raids more than 100 officers, including members from the gang and riot squads, found cocaine, 'ice', prescription drugs, steroids, encrypted mobile phones, ammunition and cash.
A loaded .32 calibre pistol was also taken from a 31-year-old man said to be a "senior office bearer" in the Hells Angels. He was arrested at a city hotel during the operation.
Forensic officers are examining the gun to determine whether it was used in any crimes.
He is being questioned and police expect to lay illegal weapon charges later on Wednesday.
"We will not tolerate the illegal activities of the outlaw motorcycle gangs and we will continue to target those gangs" Det Katsogiannis told reporters.
Opposition police spokesman Nathan Rees said the government needed to use anti-gang laws to curb gun violence.
"Declaring them unlawful would - in one fell swoop - prohibit gangs from recruiting new members, co-associating in clubhouses and plotting their next round of reprisals," he said.