Bleijie asked to clarify as laws rushed through
November 21, 2013 – 12:06PM
The parliamentary committee given just one day to review government legislation has asked the Attorney-General to \”clarify\” several points.
The legal affairs committee recommends the government\’s Criminal Organisations Disruption bill, designed to complement the bikie laws passed last month, will be made law.
But they have asked for Jarrod Bleijie to clarify, among other points, the intent of the bill – \”in relation to its application to current and former participants in a criminal organisation\”.
Despite the tight timeframe, the committee received 13 submissions.
The Queensland Law Society and the Bar Association of Queensland raised concerns over the retrospective nature of the Bill.
The police commissioner is tasked, under the bill, with developing a list of people identified as \”participants\” in a criminal organisation.
The Queensland Law Society said it needed to be made clear whether past participation would be considered and said there was a \”significant possibility of injustices occurring\” if the police commissioner submitted out of date information or intelligence that later proved to be inaccurate.
A government department spokesman said the \”thrust of the legislation\” was \”not to penalise people who have … turned over a new lead and want to get on and have a constructive life in the above-ground community\”.
\”It is simply to prevent people who are currently associated with criminal motorcycle gangs from being licensed,\” he said.
The committee has responded by asking for the legislation to make the distinction clear.
It also queried why prostitution and gaming were not included in the list of industries criminal gang members can receive licences or permits for.
It had been told that the checks for those licenses were already strident, but asked the Attorney-General confirm that was the fact.
The Bar Association questioned whether the law would have \”the effect of withdrawing approvals of relevant agreements\” and third parties who had \”acted in good faith\” would have their agreements broken, without the possibility of legal recourse.
The committee recommended Mr Bleijie address these concerns in his next reading of the Bill.
Questions were also raised over the power the police commissioner will have under the legislation and whether there would be recourse if he made an error. It was recommended Mr Bleijie also address this matter when he next speaks on the Bill.
That is expected to be on Thursday, when the legislation, which was introduced on Tuesday, will be debated and passed.
Mr Bleijie has described the legislation as the \”second phase\” of the government\’s war on bikies.