An alleged member of the Hells Angels motorcycle gang made a brief appearance in Dartmouth provincial court Wednesday in connection with a police raid at his home in Cole Harbour last week.
David James Bishop, 35, was one of three people arrested after police executed a search warrant at a Pernix Court residence on Aug. 2 and allegedly seized a large quantity of drugs, drug and outlaw motorcycle gang paraphernalia, firearms and ammunition.
One of the guns was loaded, RCMP said in a news release Wednesday.
Two women, also from Cole Harbour, were charged and released but Bishop was held in custody on 17 charges.
Bishop is charged with possession of cocaine, ecstasy and hashish for the purpose of trafficking, as well as 14 firearm-related offences.
On Thursday, defence lawyer Patrick Atherton said Bishop was consenting to remain in custody until Aug. 30, when he plans to seek bail.
More than a dozen bikers were in the public gallery to support Bishop, who nodded at them after he was escorted into the courtroom.
Bishop’s girlfriend, Jacquelyne Anna Brophy, 33, and Sara Michelle Walker, 28, are scheduled to make their first court appearance Aug. 30.
“These charges exemplify the correlation between outlaw motorcycle gangs and criminality,” RCMP Cpl. Mike Kerr of the Nova Scotia combined forces special enforcement unit said in the news release.
“It is this kind of criminal activity that brings harm and increased violence to our communities.”
At a news conference in June, Kerr predicted the Hells Angels would have a full-fledged chapter operating in Nova Scotia within months.
The Angels had a chapter in Halifax from 1984 until 2003, when police shut down their clubhouse on Dutch Village Road.
In April 2013, Bishop was sentenced to 30 months in prison after pleading guilty to trafficking cocaine and steroids, possession of hash, possessing ammunition while prohibited from doing so and breaching a June 2012 court order by failing to keep the peace and be of good behaviour.
Bishop was a member of the Bacchus biker gang at the time. Police raided his home in Halifax during an investigation into the smuggling of drugs into the Central Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Dartmouth.
The court was told Bishop provided drugs to an undercover police officer on back-to-back days in February 2013.
When police searched Bishop’s home in March 2013, they allegedly seized a Bacchus hoodie, a Bacchus 40th-anniversary calendar, a Bacchus business card and tickets to a Bacchus pig roast. Officers also discovered two vials of hash, various types of pills, 11 rounds of ammunition, a bulletproof vest, brass knuckles, a palm-held knife, a set of throwing knives, two scoresheet books, digital scales and labels for steroids.
Police called the arrest a “significant blow” to Bacchus, which they said had about 80 members in the Atlantic provinces.
Bishop was arrested on drug charges again in October 2014 following another search, but those allegations were withdrawn.