Alleged bikies arrest in Gold Coast
Five men from Victoria will spend at least six weeks behind bars after being arrested for breaking anti-bikie laws in Queensland.PT1M2S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-30d1j 620 349 January 6, 2014
Five childhood friends from Victoria are paying dearly for choosing to spend their Christmas holiday on Queensland’s Gold Coast, their solicitor says.
They have become the first group of alleged bikies or associates from outside the state to be charged with Queensland’s new laws banning criminal gang members from meeting in a public space.
One of the men, Daniel Lovett, 30, is alleged to be the sergeant-at-arms of the Melbourne chapter of the Hells Angels.
CCTV footage showing the five Victorian men walking through Surfers Paradise. Photo: Queensland Police Service.
He appeared in the Southport Magistrates Court with co-accused Bane Ajajbegovic, Dario Halolovic, Kresimir Basic and Darren Hayley on Monday.
The group, all from Dandenong in Melbourne’s south east, were arrested on Sunday at the Hilton Hotel, where they had been staying.
Mr Basic, 29, is alleged to be a Hells Angels member and Mr Hayley, 33, a prospect.
CCTV footage showing police with the five Victorian men in Surfers Paradise. Photo: Queensland Police Service.
Mr Ajajbegovic, 30, and Mr Halolovic, 23, are accused of being associated with the Comancheros.
None entered a plea, and all were remanded in custody to appear in court again on February 17.
Solicitor Bill Potts says the group are childhood friends and had travelled to the Gold Coast to holiday with their families.
Illustration: Matt Golding.
‘‘They were minding their own business, not committing any crime, threatening nobody,’’ he said.
‘‘They made the great and brutal mistake of coming to Queensland to the Gold Coast for a holiday. Because of an act of friendship, they will now be locked down in jail for 23 hours a day in pink jumpsuits, no television, little reading material and one hour’s exercise.
‘‘This is a harsh, cruel and unusual form of punishment for people presumed to be innocent.’’
The men are expected to plead not guilty and a trial isn’t expect for at least five months, Mr Potts says.
If convicted, the men face a minimum of six months in prison for the offence.