In the following post, barrister Anna Cappellano discusses the effect of the state government’s recent Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Act
The Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Act 2013 (“VLAD”) was the first piece of the Queensland Government’s controversial anti-bikie legislation.
What does the VLAD Act do?
The VLAD Act is an unprecedented mandatory sentencing regime. It provides that people who are defined as “vicious lawless associates” will automatically have to serve 15 years in prison in addition to their standard sentence. If they are deemed to be an officer bearer of the relevant association, they will automatically be required to serve 25 years in custody in addition to their standard sentence.The mandatory additional sentence of 15 or 25 years imprisonment must be imposed even if the person is not sentenced to a period of imprisonment for the original offence.
Unless the person becomes an informer, they are not eligible for parole during the additional sentence and accordingly will have to serve the entire 15 or 25 years in custody.
Relevance to “Bikies”
The recent anti-bikie legislation, including the VLAD Act, has been sold to the public as a necessary piece of legislative artillery in the Queensland Government’s “war on bikies”. In the first week post the introduction of the Bills, the government has spent close to $800,000 on an extensive advertising campaign spreading the message that they have “drawn the line” on “Criminal Bikie Gangs.”
Contrary to the political spin, the extensive mandatory detention powers in the VLAD Act are not limited in any way to alleged “criminal bikie gangs”. You do not have to be a member or associate of one of the 26 motorcycle clubs which have now been declared as criminal organisations to be classed as a vicious lawless associate.
For further information and a better understanding follow the link to really know what these laws are all about and how they will affect the everyday person.
- Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Bill ~versus~ Sons of Anarchy (slackbastard.anarchobase.com)
- Criminal Laws (Part 1): A loss of everyone’s rights (quinnscattini.wordpress.com)
- Bikies still face prosecution despite severing gang ties (aussiejustice.wordpress.com)