Our approach: People

The capacity and capability of our people are crucial to our success in responding to youth gang-related activity and crime in Victoria.

Our people are our greatest asset in combatting youth gangs.

Victoria Police will continue to invest in developing new skills across people, systems and processes, technology, infrastructure, and intelligence to remain adaptive to the youth gang environment and build our capabilities and capacity to police youth gangs effectively.

We recognise the need for greater organisational alignment for youth gang policing. To do this, we will develop agreed ways of working and establish role clarity in responding to the harm of youth gangs in our community.


We will prevent youth gangs by continuing to develop our capability to identify at-risk youth and proactively monitoring youth gang members’ activity.

We will conduct regular checks with identified and suspected youth gang members to ensure that early signs of reoffending are detected and provide connections to appropriate support services.

Investing in our people to continually develop their skills in understanding and monitoring the young people at highest risk of causing the most harm to the community is crucial to minimising the harmful impact of youth gangs.


We will support our staff’s capability to detect youth gang activity through improving tasking and coordination processes across Crime Command, the Regions and Intelligence and Covert Support.

These processes will identify who leads, who supports and when specialist central resources need to be deployed. A commitment to collaboration will reduce siloed activity and support accurate and timely intelligence provision.

We will increase our internal intelligence capability so that there is additional support where and when it is needed to successfully apprehend and arrest offenders and ensure that they are held accountable.


We will support our people to disrupt youth gangs through openly sharing intelligence and learnings from within our organisation and from partnership agencies.

We will implement training and development that focuses on evidence-based responses to engaging at-risk youth and disrupting youth gangs.

Alongside this focus on learning and development, we will undertake structured evaluations of youth gang disruption activities to review response effectiveness, share learning outcomes and inform future operations.

Case studies

Operation Alliance

Operation Alliance is Victoria Police’s dedicated response to detect, disrupt and dismantle youth gangs involved in serious and violent offending. Operation Alliance prioritises offending causing the greatest harm with proportionate responses.

Operation Alliance is informed by proactive intelligence scanning that identifies spikes in youth gang activity.

The effectiveness of Operation Alliance has been proven with multiple arrests, seizures of dangerous items, such as firearms and other weapons, and more than 200 young people diverted away from youth gang affiliation and offending since its inception.

Over the past 12 months (between December 2021 and December 2022), there were 1,395 separate arrests of youth gang members by Victoria Police, resulting in almost 3,000 charges being laid.

One in three known youth gang members (32%) which were arrested in the last 12 months (between December 2021 and December 2022) have not re-offended post-arrest.

VIPER Taskforce and Gang Crime Squad

The VIPER Taskforce is a state-wide capability that provides a tactical and investigative response to serious and organised crime, including youth gangs and their networks. It delivers a multi-faceted intelligence-led response that supports Regional and Specialist Commands.

The Gang Crime Squad is a dedicated unit in Crime Command with a purpose to systematically dismantle the networks, capability and capacity of street gangs. It provides specialist support to Regions in responding to gang crime and identifying emerging gang crime issues.

This integrated response enhances Victoria Police’s ability to target the offenders, facilitators, and enablers of youth gang-related crime.

We will be successful in effectively disrupting and dismantling youth gangs when we invest in our people and work collaboratively to leverage the full expertise, intelligence, and knowledge of our organisation.

Our role

  • Investing in learning and development opportunities for staff to take a holistic approach when interacting with young people to identify the early risk indicators of youth gang involvement.
  • Continuing to focus on the influencers and individuals driving youth gang-related offending, and develop approaches to dismantle their influence within the youth gang.
  • Leveraging our enforcement networks to focus on those high-risk youth gang members and identify opportunities to prevent and suppress youth gang networks, targeting illegal and harmful activities.
  • Undertaking targeted operations to apprehend serious and violent youth gang-affiliated criminals.

What will success look like?

  • Victoria Police is better able to identify the early indicators of involvement in youth gangs and predict escalating serious and violent offending.
  • A deployment model that proactively detects and prevents criminal youth gang activity, particularly at major events, in public spaces and increases community reassurance.
  • Clear articulation of roles and responsibilities within Victoria Police in addressing youth gang issues and offending 
  • Victoria Police has built the capacity to understand, identify and respond to youth gangs.
  • Enhanced tasking and coordination to strengthen relationships between the Regions, Crime Command and Intelligence and Covert Support Command.
  • Victoria Police has structured, and formal resources deployed where they are needed to prevent and disrupt threatening and violent gang behaviour.

The ultimate aim of disrupting and dismantling gang and gang-related activity is to break the cycle of re-offending encourage positive behavioural change. The ultimate measure of that success will always be the absence of crime.

Detective Sergeant, Regional Operations