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Political & civils rights advocate, animal lover & state co-ordinator for the Australian Federation Party


Latest attempts to tackle crime in Australia, are in themselves being exposed as a crime against justice.

Laws of association, laws that dictate where a person can work, what they can own, what they can wear, where they can go, and how a judge must act, are unacceptable in any supposed democratic nation.

Not only are the new laws abhorrent, they were rushed through with out adequate scrutiny, so far the list of changes needed are a disgrace, the wording alone has been a failure with the government now rushing through amendments to make the laws work.

The list of prescribed places that people/bikers can not visit has already entrapped the innocent, with a man who purchased his workshop in 2006, finding it on the list of prescribed places, simply because prior to the purchase it was a gearbox repair shop, owned by an ex member of a bike club.

Innocent motorcyclists are also being hit hard by the legislation, with riders already lodging complaints as a result or police intimidation, even those riding sports bikes, so is wearing black leather now an offence?

A police spokesperson revealed that "because bikers were no longer allowed to wear their colours, police are having trouble finding them, so they have no choice but to pull over all riders" and this is the result of police intelligence?

Then there is the "What you can wear" section that resulted in arrests because of a belt buckle, or the young man questioned for wearing a "Sons of Anarchy" shirt, which is from a television show.

Some of the answers offered up to those who chose 2 wheels as their mode of transport, is that if they are to ride together in groups of 3 or more, they should liaise with police first?

So people know, I ride a motorcycle more so now days for recreation, so if I go for a ride with a friend, and meet up with another, should I have to phone and ask permission of the police, should I have to accept police intervention and questioning, or wear dodgy fines and defects if I dare question the polices motives? Because that is already happening.

So the tough new laws are not working, because if they do, all that will happen is the criminal component of motorcycle clubs will simply go underground, making policing harder than ever. An interesting statistic to add here is that the governments own facts show the criminal component of the banned clubs account for only 0.3% of crime.

It is interesting to also note that while the clubs in questions all rode wearing colours and gathered at designated club rooms, the police were unable to convict them of the crimes the police tell us they commit, so what chance will they have when the criminal element go underground.

The administration of criminal justice is “not a political plaything or a suitable area for political grandstanding”.

Queensland police asked to ignore the law and community safety by their own commissioner

When the QLD police union warned that police were being ordered to employ questionable tactics including the execution of “dodgy” warrants on people’s homes, clubs and businesses, their senior executive have stepped well over the mark and beyond their mandate.

Any legislation that allows police to arrest a person for entering their own premises, is not supported by any form of justice, and having senior police executive demanding police to ignore the law, is unacceptable.

Bikers are also banned from their own businesses and or visiting tattoo parlours, even if it is their lively hood, with police staff told to check on these businesses up to 20 times a day, any failure by the police to do as they are told, will face disciplinary action or face being sacked.

Even the police themselves in QLD are objecting to being taken off normal duties and being told to sit outside biker premises to make sure the owners or members do not go inside, this also applies to their own legal businesses.

If Bikers cannot go home, go to their businesses or their own club houses, or can no longer seek the support of their close friends, what do the police expect they will do? Pushing supposed criminals underground, and pushing innocent parties over the line will only result in more issues for QLD police, on top of undermining justice at its grass roots.

The actions of Campbell Newman’s government have the ability to make criminals out of honest people in the very same way the failed South Australian laws did.

If a biker is on the straight and narrow regardless of past mistakes, they can now have their business destroyed, their property taken and their support network taken from them. If this happened to any innocent man, the only option left to survive is the very one these draconian laws are meant to address.

In Australia we have laws to address crime. Increasing penalties in line with community expectations is one thing, writing draconian laws that offend natural justice or that take away the presumption of innocence are indeed abhorrent, but demanding that police excuse our present protections is totally unacceptable.

The past 5 years have been interesting times in direct relation with these serious issues, with most crime related articles including even distant relationships to bikers, as if these proposed legislative amendments are reliant on the public’s perceptions of bikers in general.

So is the issue really about bikers, or is it as it appears, a massive grab for power?

Whether it is the result of this spin, or genuine public outrage over the actions of outlaw bikers, the proposed legislation to deal with the problem creates an issue for every Australian in regards to the erosion of their civil and human rights, because the legislation is not biker specific.

Many Australians are already showing their support for laws that attack their own fundamental rights, but taking away the rights of over 21 million people, over the abhorrent actions of a few hundred, or even a thousand, is very short sighted indeed.

Bike riders in QLD that have even joined in on charity rides are now finding their names on the list of associates, so at every level, the actions of the government and the police are worthy of criminal charges.

“From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbours’ interests without striking a dangerous blow at your own.” Carl Schurtz

The high court has already dismissed as invalid previous attempts by state governments to introduce similar legislation, but his case goes further, because in essence the police themselves are being asked to partake in criminal actions.

It is interesting to note, that the QLD police minister stated “I don’t care if they give up their colours” so even if these clubs disband, they will still be targeted, even those with no recent criminal activity “should be in jail” 25 years jail for attending their own property is bad law, who will be next is the question every Australian should ask, but will they?

Imagine you are invited to a family barbecue in the park.

Your advernturous Aunt Chrissy, has recently started a new relationship with Mick, a member of the Finks Motorcycle Club. You have met Mick and a couple of his mates, also members of the Finks Motorcycle Club, on one occasion before, and had a laugh over a few beers.

You head out to the park with all the other members of the family. As you are enjoying your steak and beverage Mick’s friends arrive on their motorcycles and join in the fun. You have a chat with them about the football game last weekend.

Under the new so called “Anti-Bikie” laws you and possibly other members of your family have committed an offence for which you could all be gaoled for a minimum of six months.

On top of that, you could be potentially liable to being hauled before the CMC to answer questions about Mick and his two mates.

This is what happens when governments pass laws that make people liable not for what they have done but for who they associate with, and you risk innocent people getting hurt.

These laws make no mention whatsoever of Bikers. They apply to any association of 3 or more people.

If say you are a member of the local bowls or golf club. You get involved in a scuffle trying to throw a misbehaving member out of the club. You are convicted of wounding, which simply requires that the true skin of the other person is broken. Under these laws, you get an extra 15 years added to your gaol sentence.

Bad law will never replace lazy policing, we have laws in this country to address criminal actions, and we don’t need laws that entrap the innocent. If the police cannot prove guilt by way of a person’s actions, then that person is innocent until proven otherwise.

The QLD government are well aware that biker related crime makes up for less that 1% of all crime (0.37%) yet are diverting all their resources in the scrutiny of Outlaw motorcycle clubs, so one must ask, who is watching the other criminals doing the other 99.63% of crime in QLD?

On that note their own facts and figures also show that less than 50% of Outlaw motorcycle club members have recorded offences, so are the 51% that have done nothing wrong along with other innocent motorcycle riders being entrapped by these laws considered acceptable collateral damage?

Any minister or government that would promote laws attacking the rights and liberties of their own people, or any minister that dare demand our police services break the law, are the ones that we should be charging with criminal offences.

Mark Aldridge