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January 18, 2022

Bikies flag another legal challenge in Qld

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Queensland's anti-bikie laws may again be considered by the High Court. (file pic)
Queensland’s anti-bikie laws may again be considered by the High Court. (file pic)

Bikies have flagged another High Court challenge after the Queensland government revealed it will replace controversial anti-bikie laws with similarly targeted legislation.

A government-ordered review into the 2013 legislation has recommended it be repealed and replaced with a so-called “organised crime framework”.

The government has agreed to adopt three key elements: introducing a new serious organised crime circumstance of aggravation, replace the anti-association offence with a consorting offence used in NSW, and place convicted offenders on control orders similar to those used in international anti-terrorism legislation.

Lawyer Zeke Bentley, of Irish Bentley, said another High Court challenge could be in order.

‘They don’t seem to be getting rid of many of the civil liberty breaches brought about by Campbell Newman,’ he said.

‘We really need to attack that as Queenslanders because it’s a slippery road.’

Hells Angels member Terry McCormick said the new course of action was a travesty of justice.

‘We live in a democracy where it’s alright to vilify and demonise a subculture,’ he said.

Rebels Brisbane Chapter president Mick Kosenko urged the government to tackle “real crime” and dump the laws.

‘They’re chasing us for high handlebars and noisy pipes, making out like we’re some sort of smart criminal organisation,’ he added.

A High Court challenge to the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment (VLAD) Act mounted by 17 motorcycle gangs was struck out in November 2014.

The review acknowledged areas remained vulnerable to challenges on constitutional grounds.


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