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NSW will not consider introducing anti-bikie laws until High Court decision made


Confident Campbell
The High Court challenge has been brought on by Hells Angels member Stefan Kuczborski.

The High Court challenge has been brought on by Hells Angels member Stefan Kuczborski.

THE NSW Government says it won’t consider adopting Queensland’s anti-bikie laws until after a High Court challenge decision is reached.

The state is among five jurisdictions from across the country that will back Queensland in the High Court against a challenge to its VLAD laws, which impose mandatory sentences on bikie gang members and leaders should they be convicted of various offences.

South Australia, NSW, Victoria, Western Australia and the Northern Territory have all supported the Newman Government’s divisive laws.

But a spokesman for NSW Attorney-General Brad Hazzard said the state would not consider introducing any laws mirroring Queensland’s until the High Court case was over.

“The fight against organised crime continues to be a priority for NSW but any consideration of the Queensland laws would need to wait for the outcome of the High Court decision,” he said.

The High Court challenge, brought on by Hells Angels member Stefan Kuczborski with the backing of the United Motorcycle Council of Queensland, has been listed for the first week of September.

They argue the laws are unconstitutional as they deny gang members and their associates the right to free speech and natural justice. They also say the laws undermine the integrity of the courts. The state, however, argues the laws are valid.

Police have warned that if the anti-bikie laws are thrown out it would derail their efforts to clamp down on the gangs and their criminal activity.

The laws were passed last year in the aftermath of the infamous Broadbeach brawl, when dozens of members of the Bandidos flooded into the mall during the school holidays to confront a rival.

Critics of the Newman Government and Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie have long opposed the laws but the Government says they are a necessary measure against organised crime.

Local Government Minister David Crisafulli yesterday seized on the support of the other states, arguing that it demonstrated the need for the laws, even beyond Queensland’s borders.

“It’s tremendous and I hope it’s a sign that what we’re doing is in the interests of everybody,” he said. “This has always been about one thing and that is creating a safer community. And the fact that, right across the board, states are joining us, shows that we’re on the right track.”