Senior Rebels member says new laws go too far
A SENIOR member of the Sunshine Coast Rebels has described
Premier Campbell Newman as out of touch with Queenslanders, and called for
him to stand down.
Tony Jardine, a 22-year club veteran, believed new laws to
clamp down on illegal bikie activity do not have the support of most
"Newman is out of touch with what people want - people
definitely want crime cleaned up, but in the process they don't want their
civil liberties, or innocent people, targeted," Mr Jardine said.
"I think Newman needs to step down if he's that out of
touch with what people want.
"I know people who voted Liberal ... but they didn't want
Do you agree with Campbell Newman’s new
Yes, he’s making Queensland safer
bikies are criminals
are innocent ‘til proven guilty
No, the new
laws will restrict freedom
This is not a
scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions
of those who chose to participate.
The Rebels usually avoid media interviews, but Mr Jardine
said the "mud-slinging" in relation to new bikie laws convinced them to
speak to The Daily.
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie responded by saying
feedback for the new laws had been "overwhelmingly positive".
"Queenslanders and Sunshine Coast residents are sick of
these gangs' brand of intimidation and illegal activities," Mr Bleijie said.
"Our laws target only criminal motorcycle gangs, not
law-abiding motorcycle riders and groups."
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However, Mr Jardine noted club members and their
associates could now be charged for simply being together in groups of
"We're not allowed to have friends - if we've got friends,
they're an associate," Mr Jardine said.
"You can't be guilty of association, it's not fair."
Another member said the club aimed to bring together
like-minded members to share interests in motorcycles, drinking, spending
time with mates and "chasing girls".
Mr Jardine said the Rebels' constitution had strict rules
with regard to members and crime.
"Nobody from our Sunshine Coast chapter has been jailed
for any crime," he said.
"If anyone ... uses the club in a criminal activity, they
are using the club's name against everyone's wishes, and they're out."
Members of the Sunshine Coast chapter include parents and
eight grandparents, many in long-term marriages, with respectable and stable
"We're not the demons they're portraying us as," the
unnamed member said.