, Gloucester, MA

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March 14, 2013

City man arrested, guns seized in investigation of Hell's Angels, Red Devils

He, three others being held without bail

A local member of the Red Devils motorcycle club, a national club that feeds into the notorious Hell’s Angels, was arrested early Wednesday at his Gloucester home, where police found eight unsecured weapons.

He is facing charges that include kidnapping, mayhem and extortion, as part of a larger Massachusetts State Police gang unit investigation that rounded up four suspects around the region.

FBI agents, state police, and Gloucester police surrounded Nickolas C. Avelis, Sr.’s home at 44 Grapevine Road Wednesday at about 5:30 a.m., and Gloucester police noted that the property had been equipped with private outdoor surveillance cameras.

Police eventually arrested Avelis on a rear deck of the home and seized eight firearms from the home.

Avelis and three other alleged members of the motorcycle club had been charged with kidnapping, extortion and mayhem for allegedly smashing a “disgraced” Red Devils member’s hand with a hammer during a ritualistic ceremony last October inside the Red Devils club’s Byfield “church,” or meeting place. The gang also allegedly stole that man’s motorcycle.

The arrests took place a day after police issued warrants for their arrests based on statements made by the Revere victim and his family regarding incidents that began back on Sept. 22, 2012, and culminated Monday when the men allegedly threatened to kill the victim, rape his girlfriend and harm her children, according to state police.

According to Gloucester police, officers had knocked repeatedly on the front door about 6 a.m., when they saw Avelis open a rear deck door, while apparently trying to stuff an object into the front of his pajama bottoms. Police handcuffed the man immediately.

“Avelis, who appeared to be trying to evade police as well, was taken down to the deck surface and secured for officer safety,” the Gloucester police report indicated.

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