The LNP vows to destroy the bikes of convicted bikie criminals Monday but one lawyer says his client just wants to “look for a job”. Nine News.
It is called the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Bill and it forms the basis of Queensland’s bikie blitz.
It aims to break the spirit of criminal motorcycle gangs. Identified gang members who are found guilty of a crime will receive a sentence for that offence and then will “receive a further 15 years mandatory imprisonment cumulative to any imprisonment imposed for the declared offence and further 10 years [mandatory] cumulative imprisonment if they are an office bearer”.
That means identified criminal gang members will receive at least 15 years imprisonment for crimes related to their gang membership. Sergeant-at-Arms and the like will receive at least 25 years.
However there is an out for bikies receiving the mandatory additional sentence – turn informer.
Gang members who turn supergrass will be able to have their additional sentence cut or abolished.
The mouthful of legislation is one of three new bills Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie introduced in parliament on Tuesday.
Bandidos bikie colours
The other two deal with tattoo parlours and who can own, operate and work in them and amendments to the criminal code which creates three new offences which will make it illegal for gang members to gather and go to certain locations – such as entertainment areas – or recruit.
But it is the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Bill the government is most proud of.
Premier Campbell Newman said the new laws were “among the toughest in the world”.
Queensland’s new “VLAD’ laws target bikies
“They are not just designed to contain the gangs, or manage them, they are designed to destroy them,” Mr Newman said standing inside Parliament House, where the gates remain locked, police patrols have been increased and public tours are still cancelled as part of tightened security measures.
“We are going to take away their ill-gotten gains, their money, their assets, their bikes, their vehicles, their guns, their drugs.
“We will stop them gathering in groups and wearing their colours in certain place. They’ll no longer be able to promote or recruit to their gangs and we will shut them out of tattoo parlours.”
Mr Newman also said the laws would undergo a statutory review in three years time “to make sure they are focused on the reaching the goal that we have set”.
“Law abiding motorcyclists have nothing to fear”, Mr Newman said, although he did ask for their patience.
“This will not be quick or easy but this government is in it for the long haul to shut down these gangs and drive them out of the state,” Mr Newman said.
Mr Bleijie was equally tough in his talk.
“The members are deliberately cruel, violent and dangerous,” he said.
“This legislation will ensure that it will no longer be [viable] to be part of a criminal motorcycle group.
“Any group who persists should be prepared to feel the full weight of the law brought down on them.”
Opposition leader Annastacia Palaszczuk questioned Mr Newman on his April 2012 comments when he spoke out against banning gang colours by saying “the team that I lead believe you shouldn’t be sort of penalised for wearing your footy team uniform jersey”.
Mr Newman, who has acknowledged his previous comments already in the past two weeks, said a lot had changed since then.
The new laws will be introduced and passed during this week’s parliament sitting.