New legislation to make life hell for bikies
They are the 1 per cent which have dominated almost 100 per cent of the government's time for the past two weeks.
And now they could spend up to 30 years in a supermax prison, where they will remain in their cell for 23 hours a day, without a television or gym, and allowed just one supervised visit a week with family. All for a charge that would net non-gang members less than half that time.
"This will be the toughest experience that one can have in the jail system in Australia, while still compiling with our international obligations," Premier Campbell Newman said.
Queensland Premier Campbell Newman's government is getting tough on bikies. Photo: Glenn Hunt
"We have been very clear about that, very conscious about that, but it will be a tough prison experience and the reason is, that if we allow these people to get together and socialise, they will subvert the prisons.
"If we allow them constant contact with relatives, they will find ways to smuggle stuff in, it happens.
"And we are not going to allow that. We are going to do everything we can to make sure that they go to prison and they can not conduct their activities from behind bars and that they are ultimately controlled as a very dangerous group of people within the Queensland prison system."
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie. Photo: Glenn Hunt
Unless they turn against their club.
If the Crime and Misconduct Commission can't get an answer during a 'star chamber' hearing and the five-year sentence for contempt doesn't help loosen lips, the government is counting on its mandatory sentencing to do the trick.
A jury will have to decide whether or not someone is a member of a criminal motorcycle gang or as the government have labelled them, a vicious lawless associate.
If they find they are, that member will receive a sentence for whatever crime they have been convicted of, and even if that sentence is suspended, they will receive a mandatory 15 years on top of any other penalty.
If they are found to be an office bearer, that's another 10 years.
If their original head sentence was for 10 years, a common penalty handed down for drug crimes, a club president could feasibly spend up to 35 years in jail, which is longer than triple-murderer, Max Sica.
The only way out of the mandatory additional sentence is to turn informer.
"The only way that people will not have these tough mandatory sentences applicable to them is if they come up with information that leads to the arrest or prosecution of others within these organisations," Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said.
"As a group they know that if they work in a group they have protection as a group. We want them to know that protection is no longer there. We want people to come forward with information and we think that people will because of the deterrent in terms of these mandatory sentences."
But Queensland Council for Civil Liberties vice-president Terry O'Gorman said not only did the mandatory sentencing laws turn judges into "cardboard cutouts sitting at benches wearing wigs", they would not reap the information the government says it wants.
"First of all, it is up to the commissioner of police to decide whether the information an informer offers is attractive enough - then they have to apply to have the sentence reconsidered," Mr O'Gorman said.
"But they won't turn informer because the danger of them, or their family or friends, being killed is so great."
But Mr Newman, who says "you would have to be mad to remain in a criminal motorcycle gang in Queensland" by the end of this week, added there was a simple fix.
"It is not worth it," he said.
"Get an honest job, hand in your colours, join a real motorcycle enthusiasts' club and just enjoy riding.
"That is what we ask you to do."
List of illegal bikie groups
- Black Uhlans
- Coffin Cheaters
- Fourth Reich
- Gypsy Jokers
- Hells Angels
- Highway 61
- Iron Horsemen
- Life and Death
- Lone Wolf
- Muslim Brotherhood Movement
- The Notorious
- Odins Warriors
- Red Devils
List of Clubhouses/ businesses where gathering will now be illegal
- 11 Frodsham Street, Albion
- shop 5/1 Thorsborne Street, Beenleigh
- 6 Enterprise Street, Boyne Island
- shed 14/136 Aumuller Street, Bungalow
- 200 Hartley Street, Bungalow
- 1/16 Ern Harley Drive, Burleigh Heads
- 34 Lemana Lane, Burleigh Heads
- unit 3/7 Lear Jet Drive, Caboolture
- 104 Spence Street, Cairns
- unit 3/37 Caloundra Road, Caloundra West
- shed 1/5 Garema Street, Cannonvale
- shed 4/11 Ryecroft Street, Carrara
- 31 Selhurst Street, Coopers Plains
- unit 7/12 Hayter Street, Currumbin Waters
- unit 5/17 Cottonview Street, Emerald
- 11 Greer Lane, Eumundi
- shed 3/85 Hanson Road, Gladstone
- unit 3/31 Tradelink Drive, Hillcrest
- unit 5/29 Pound Street, Kingaroy
- 15–17 Avian Street, Kunda Park
- unit 5/1 Chain Street, Mackay
- 4 Keats Street, Mackay
- unit 4/55 Cronulla Avenue, Mermaid Beach
- 4 Ellen Street, Moorooka
- 31 Unwin Street, Moorooka
- 1 Zena Street, Mt Isa
- unit 2/12 Lawrence Drive, Nerang
- unit 5/144 Eumundi Noosa Road, Noosaville
- 2 Millchester Road, Queenton
- 26252 Peak Downs Highway, Racecourse
- shed 12/13 Turley Street, Raceview
- 36 East Lane, Rockhampton
- unit 1/26 Rowland Street, Slacks Creek
- unit 2/8 Proprietary Drive, Tingalpa
- shed 4/14 Civil Court, Toowoomba
- 209 James Street, Toowoomba
- units 3 and 4/82 Leyland Street, Townsville
- 29 Matheson Street, Virginia
- 81 Ingham Road, West End
- 391 Montague Road, West End