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Palaszczuk Government’s proposed anti-bikie laws

BIKIE gang members will no longer be barred from working in areas such as electrical, security and plumbing industries just because of their associations.

Under the Palaszczuk Government’s proposed laws, bikies will also be able to use “fear of retribution as a reasonable excuse for not complying with orders under the (Crime and Corruption Commission’s) powers of compulsion”.

The CCC would also no longer be able to withhold evidence that is potentially favourable to those charged with offences.

Explanatory notes attached to the new laws also reveal Newman Government-introduced minimum sentences for contempt of the CCC will be repealed.

Currently, those who refuse to give evidence or provide information to the CCC under the watchdog’s coercive powers face fixed sentences, with jail time from the first offence.

Those laws would be replaced with an “escalating, tiered maximum penalty scheme”.

Meanwhile, the controversial Newman Government laws prevented criminal gang members from working in industries such as electrical, towing, racing and security.

“Under the 2013 suite, a person’s mere association with a criminal organisation (or members of a criminal organisation) excluded the person from holding a range of occupational licenses, certificates and authorities, notwithstanding that the person may not have been charged or convicted with any offence themselves,” the new Bill’s explanatory notes state.

Labor’s proposed laws would reverse that.

It would also make it more difficult to keep bikies out of the tattoo industry. The Taskforce that reviewed the Newman Government laws recommended that the Tattoo Parlours Act 2013 be retained.

Those laws ensured all applications for tattoo licenses were assessed by the Police Commissioner who could reject them without informing the applicant why an “adverse security determination” had been made.

The Government will keep and rename the Tattoo Parlours Act 2013, but will “establish a more procedurally fair process” and exclude “the use of confidential criminal intelligence in licensing decisions”.

However, it will disqualify those with convictions to their name relating to organised crime offences.

The Newman Government’s controversial VLAD Act will also be appealed.

New consorting offence and public safety protection orders will have to be reviewed by a retired judge after five years.

The Government has previously announced other components of its laws, including the introduction of anti-consorting laws, the replacement of the VLAD laws with shorter mandatory sentences attached to a new aggravating circumstance of organised crime and the banning of gang colours in all public spaces.

Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath said the VLAD laws were “excessive and disproportionate, and riddled with serious prosecutorial challenges”.

She also noted that the Bill would provide for “transitional arrangements for any individuals that have pleaded guilty and who have been sentenced under the VLAD Act”.

Like the VLAD laws, offenders will have to cooperate with police to avoid the mandatory sentences under the new scheme.

Ms D’Ath said the new laws would also repeal a section of the LNP laws that restrict a “person’s right to apply for financial assistance for legal representation at a crime hearing under the immediate response function”.

Changes to the Bail Act have also been proposed.

They would repeal sections of the 2013 laws that mean a criminal organisation participant, such as a bikie, has to show cause as to why their staying in custody is not justified.

The new laws would also scrap a Newman government’s scheme that empowered jails to segregate bikies from other prisoners and restrict their privileges.

The Bill’s explanatory notes also provide more detail about the Government’s anti-consorting laws.

They will not apply to people under 18 — a move possibly aimed at avoiding issues experienced in NSW where young people were seemingly being targeted under the laws.

Certain types of interactions will also be excluded, such as running into someone at the post office or spending time with close family members.

And while the ban on colours would be expanded to include all public spaces, a number of amendments have also been proposed so that staff or managers of licensed venues do not commit an offence if they do not force a person wearing colours to leave, provided they take “reasonable steps” to refuse entry.

They are also spared punishment if they “reasonably believed their safety would have been endangered” if they had further attempted to eject a patron in colours or if they did not believe it was safe or practical to do so.

The penalties for those who wear colours in licensed venues would, however, be reduced.

But a defence has been built into the laws for those who wear colours for a “genuine artistic, educational, legal or law enforcement purpose”.

The Palaszczuk Government also wants to strip police of their powers to search and detain people they “reasonably” suspect of being a member of a criminal gang.

The laws would also do away with the aggravating circumstance of being a participant in a criminal organisation when it comes to failing to stop a vehicle when directed by police.

Meanwhile, the Katter’s Australian Party says it is yet to take a position on the proposed laws, but insist it must be a “fair process”.

“We have not seen the full detail of the proposed legislation, and at this stage we are yet to come to a position on it,” KAP MP Robbie Katter said.

“When the Newman laws were introduced at a minute to midnight we were angry and had deep concerns that this would do more harm than good to rights of the individual in Queensland.”

Fellow KAP MP Shane Knuth said the party had “some questions and perhaps concerns”.


No bikie colours in licensed venues.

■Gang members cannot associate in groups of three or more.

■ Mandatory sentences of 15 to 25 years for gang members and office bearers.

■Ban on clubhouses.

■ Crime and Corruption Commission does not have to hand over evidence potentially favourable to defendant.

■Mandatory minimum jail sentences for contempt of the CCC.

■ Fear of retribution cannot be used as an excuse for not complying with CCC coercive powers.

■Gang members cannot obtain tattoo licences or work in industries such as electrical, towing, plumbing and security.


No colours in any public space, with possible jail time, but penalties for wearing colours in licensed venues would be reduced.

■ Anti-consorting laws to apply after warnings.

■Shorter mandatory sentences attached to new serious organised crime aggravating circumstance.

■ Clubhouses to stay closed with new organised crime control order and public safety orders to be introduced. This is fucked..

■Bikies would not be barred from becoming electricians or plumbers but organised crime offences would be taken into account.

■ Tattoo licence bans to apply to those with organised crime convictions.

■A new fortification removal order to stop criminals reinforcing doors or setting up security measures.

■ Tougher maximum penalties for drug traffickers and those dealing in child exploitation.

■A transitional period of two years would be in place.