targeting Queensland outlaw motorcycle gangs could
see five year sentences increased to "25 or 30
years" which the state government says will act as a
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
"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
"If we allow them constant contact with
relatives, they will find ways to smuggle stuff in, it
"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
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
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
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
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
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
"It is not worth it," he said.
"Get an honest job, hand in your colours,
join a real motorcycle enthusiasts' club and just enjoy
"That is what we ask you to do."
List of illegal bikie groups
Life and Death
Muslim Brotherhood Movement
List of Clubhouses/ businesses where gathering will now