LAWS TARGET BIKIE BATTLES – Monday March 18 2013

– The Victoria Police anti-bikie Taskforce will use new criminal association laws to tackle the recent outbreak of warfare between outlaw motorcycle gangs.
The anti-association laws were introduced to Parliament with great fanfare in November, but were not active until last week when they were proclaimed. The delay was to allow Victoria Police to plan how they will use the laws.
The laws have become even more pertinent with the spate of bikie-related violence across Melbourne over the last fortnight, including the shooting of Bandidos enforcer Toby Mitchell, which led to a declaration of war by the Bandidos against the Hells Angels.
A police spokeswoman said it would be inappropriate to comment on which particular groups would be targeted under the new laws.
Once an organisation is declared illegal, the court can then make control orders banning members of that group from associating or participating in gang activities, including riding together and wearing their club colours and emblems. They would also make similar orders from other states enforceable in Victoria.
Individuals who breach a control order will face up to five years’ jail and organisations can be fined up to $400,000 and have assets confiscated.
It is believed that more than 100 bikies from various clubs met in January to discuss a possible response to the laws.
Police must make an application to the Supreme Court for an organisation to be declared illegal, and the final decision lies with a judge. The Victorian government has said this means the laws will not be successfully challenged in the High Court, as it happened with similar laws in other states. Queensland had a victory this week when the High Court ruled police in that state old keep secret intelligence used to apply to have organisations declared criminal – Dan Oakes


About Jumpin' Jack Cash
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