do they like wasting taxpayers money or what?
THREE alleged Rebel bikies members who won
a legal battle to have court proceedings against them abandoned could again
face charges, with police arguing they have strong evidence against the
Lawyers for Jason Michael Heang, Dominic
Michael Muhling and Kiel Vaughan Collins appeared in the Court of Appeal in
Townsville yesterday to fight an appeal launched by Queensland Police
The men were accused of secretly meeting
in a gym at Deeragun in December 2013, in breach of the former Newman
government’s Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment legislation.
In September last year, Magistrate Ross
Mack granted an application to abandon proceedings against the men
permanently, saying they could not get a fair trial. This followed a court
bungle where Detective Sergeant Brendan Stevenson attended a Crime and
Corruption Commission to hear testimony from the trio, voiding the men’s
right to silence.
But in a hearing in Townsville’s Court of
Appeal barrister Michael Nicolson, representing the Queensland Police
Service, argued the men did have a case to answer.
“Ultimately, Stevenson was lawfully
present … and there was no information obtained from the examination at the
commission that was used as evidence in the current prosecution,” Mr
“Therefore there was no actual unfairness
and or prejudice in the present case.”
Heang, Muhling and Collins are facing a
mandatory six- month stint in jail if convicted of knowingly gathering in
groups of three or more members in a public place.
Senior counsel Peter Callaghan said there
was no proof his client Muhling and the other accused were meeting in a
public place, nor that they were directly associated or knew details of each
other’s associations with the Rebels.
He also said Mr Mack made no error in
determining the men would not receive a fair trial, arguing Sgt Stevenson’s
appearance at the examination meant prejudice was unavoidable.
“The prosecution’s case is doomed to
fail,” Mr Callaghan said. “(A gym) can’t be a public place just because a
member of the public, who becomes a member can get in there.”
Judge John Blauch SC said due to the
complexity of the case, he couldn’t indicate when a decision would be handed