Queensland Laws Clarified
Queensland’s so-called ‘anti-bikie’ laws were ostensibly brought in because of a riot and a siege of a police station in Surfers Paradise. This riot would not have attracted anyone’s attention if it had occurred an…ywhere else nor would it have even rated on any scale of riots. It was, allegedly, a relatively minor fight between some members and associates of 2 OMC clubs. Although, this behaviour was illegal, and frightening to any onlookers it was an insigniﬁcant event which, in any other circumstances, would have been forgotten. Similarly with the siege. What has been called a siege was no more than a couple of members of one of the clubs yelling at the police station to release their friends. It too was a relatively insigniﬁcant event.
The Queensland government has used these events as an excuse to bring in the most horrendous, anti-democratic and harsh laws which will and have caused many an injustice. Despite the Queensland government’s own ﬁgures showing that most types of crime are in the decline or stable and their own ﬁgures showing that members of OMCs are only responsible for less than 1% of crime, and most of those being minor trafﬁc and drug matters, they have not only persisted with these terrible laws, but, they have amended them to include almost anyone who has had any contact with an OMC club. So it’s not necessary for the police to prove you are a current participant in a prescribed club, they only have to prove, to the extent they have to prove it at all, that you were at some time prior, a participant. Even if you were associated with a prescribed club 30 years ago for 2 days only, that’s almost certainly enough, to make you a participant.
There have been dozens of new Acts and amendments passed, which, in almost all cases, rely upon the deﬁnition of participant in a criminal organisation, to deﬁne the person the subject of the law. The ‘criminal organisation’ is just any of the 26 clubs, some of whom are not even in Queensland, a couple of whom are not even motorcycle clubs and one which doesn’t even exist, which have been prescribed in the Criminal Code Regulations. They have been prescribed at the stroke of a pen, not based on any evidence, let alone evidence to an acceptable standard.
Bail Act – This Act has been amended so that if the police allege you are a participant in one of the prescribed clubs, then the onus of obtaining bail falls onto you having to show cause that your detention in custody is not justiﬁed. The police do not have to prove you are a participant in a club, they only have to make the allegation. On top of this; the Chief Magistrate has ordered that all bail applications concerning these offences be heard by him in Brisbane.
This means, for those charged in the country or a long way from Brisbane, there will be a considerable delay in having a bail hearing. Not to mention the difficulty in coordinating with your legal representatives. Even for those charged in or near Brisbane there is a delay. It is an accepted legal principal that once you have been charged you must have a bail hearing as soon possible. So much for that principal.
Corrective Services Act – OMCs suffer harsh conditions in custody. It applies before or after conviction. Some of the worst conditions for those it applies to are, 23 hours solitary conﬁnement, being forced to wear pink overalls and only being allowed a 6 minute phone call a week. You have to choose who you need to speak to most urgently; your wife, your child, your parent or your lawyer.
Criminal Code – The worst and most spoken about are sections 60A, B & C.
Section 60A is the anti-association section. It provides that any participant in a criminal organisation who is in a public place with 2 or more other participants is committing an offence and if convicted must serve a minimum of 6 months gaol up to a maximum of 3 years. As I’ve mentioned ‘participant’ is very broadly deﬁned and can include almost anyone who has had any contact with an OMC club or attended more than one bike show or some other social event or even done business with the club. You do not need to be associating for a criminal purpose, just be in a public place together.
VLAD Act – This is a new Act. It has one purpose. If you commit an offence which is in the VLAD Act Schedule and you are a participant in a criminal organisation (remember, this captures just about anybody who has had anything to do with an OMC) and you commit the offence in furtherance of some kind of club business (it doesn’t have to be criminal business) then you MUST get, on top of what a judge has already given you, an extra 15 years gaol if you are a member and an extra 25 years gaol if you are an ofﬁcer of a club. It is mandatory. You cannot make any submissions and there is nothing you can do about it. Even if a judge penalises you with only a $50 ﬁne, you still must get an extra 15 or 25 years gaol.
Liquor Act – This has been amended by the new Tattoo Parlours Act, which itself was introduced to prevent participants in a criminal organisation from working in the tattoo industry. These participants, for the most part, are not criminals and are not members of any criminal organisation, except for the stroke of a government minister’s pen. If you wear or carry any insignia, jewellery or similar which displays any prescribed club’s colours or similar or any 1%er symbol into any licensed premises then you are committing an offence. For the ﬁrst offence there is a large ﬁne, for any subsequent offences there is a larger ﬁne and gaol.
Police Powers Act – This Act has been amended so that if the police suspect you are a participant in a criminal organisation they can stop and detain you and search you without a warrant. (Your home also) How do they suspect you are such a participant? By how you look? Your hair? How you walk?
There are numerous other Acts which have been amended to affect the life and employment of members of OMCs, such as the Electrical Services Act, Building Services Act, Racing Act, Tow Truck Act, Casino Act, etc. etc. If you are an electrician then you will lose your licence, similarly if you are in construction. These are just a couple of examples. One area of great concern is how these laws affect members of OMCs outside of Queensland.
Queensland police only have jurisdiction within Queensland borders. You cannot be charged with breaching, for example, the anti-association laws (S60A), if you associate outside of Queensland. However, this has not stopped some Queensland police from threatening to charge OMC members who have associated outside of Queensland borders. (If you associate within Queensland borders, of course, you are committing an offence and will be charged.) But, it’s of no comfort if you’re waiting 3 months in solitary conﬁnement before you get to prove you’re correct.
It is abundantly clear that Queensland police are using intelligence from all over Australia to use against OMC members when they arrive in Queensland. I have heard of a number of cases where members have arrived and been surveilled immediately.
If you are planning a holiday in Queensland, beware! Remember, Queensland, beautiful one day, a fascist, unjust, anti-bike riding police state the next.
Honorary Legal Counsel,
United Motorcycle Council (NSW)See more
Behind this legislation.
With the G20 summit coming up in Brisbane, these laws may be aimed at declaring Marshall law upon Qld.Bikers are the scapegoat and the necessary means to facilitate such a move. 1%ers are the public face for the fear campaign but if Qld Pol piss off enough everyday riders in their quest for marshall law, soon enough they will piss off a loose cannon who will be the cause for this.This is what is called a ‘False flag’. An inside job to get the public to support the loss of their rights for the greater good against a false fear.Same thing happened with 911 twin towers and Port Arthur massacre to assassination of JFK. We have seen laws enacted before that were just waiting for an incident to enact them. This is no different and just another part in their grand scheme of things. Just look at history.