OFF THE WIRE
Rival gangs involving outlaw bikie members and Middle Eastern criminal elements are responsible for a string of drive-by shootings targeting the Sydney homes of family members, police believe.
Police have established Strike Force Felix, after seven shootings were reported in western Sydney since Thursday, and say they are determined to prevent further reprisals.
"There are crossovers between the outlaw motorcycle gangs involved and the Middle Eastern organised criminal environment," Assistant Commissioner Dave Hudson told reporters in Sydney on Monday.
Police believe that five of the incidents - at Merrylands on Thursday and Canley Heights, Holroyd and two at Granville on the weekend - are linked.
"The offences have been targeted at peripheral members of family groups," Asst Comm Hudson said."
"It's correct to say that wider families are being targeted."
Two other incidents at Old Guildford and Condell Park are being investigated as separate events.
Police have a number of suspects but would not reveal if they were close to making arrests.
"We'll be targeting all members of those groups," Asst Comm Hudson said.
Some of the occupants of targeted homes have resisted speaking to police.
Asst Comm Hudson said it was unclear whether this was because of a fear of reprisal or because they were personally known to the offenders.