Queensland Government proposes tough new anti-gang laws. Photo: Kate Geraghty
Mandatory penalties, bans on gatherings, locations, and vehicle confiscations form the foundation of the Queensland government's new anti-criminal gang legislation.
Under the proposed anti-racketeering laws, gang members would be banned from gathering in groups, attending certain locations such as entertainment districts, wearing club colours inside licensed venues and restaurants, owning, operating or working in tattoo parlours or promoting or recruiting members.
Members of outlaw motorcycle gangs will also face mandatory prison sentences if convicted of serious criminal offences and be banned from gathering in their own club houses under the new legislation.
A conviction for serious assault of a police officer will carry a minimum one year prison sentence, with mandatory minimum sentencing for the possession and trafficking of firearms already in place.
Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said he looked to other countries, particularly the United States, for ideas about creating the draft legislation, but added the government had already been looking for solutions.
Banning club colours is not a new idea – New South Wales has already banned gang identifiers in the Kings Cross district.
Queensland acting premier Jeff Seeney said he expected outlaw gangs to use their "considerable resources" to challenge any new legislation legally.
"The threat of legal challenge will be met," he said.
The anti-bikie laws established under the previous government, for which the Finks have become a test case, were "too slow", Mr Bleijie said.
The government would spend the next few weeks working with a taskforce to create immediate consequences.
"We'll do anything we can in the next two weeks to make sure we can have it as soon as possible," Mr Bleijie said.
Mr Seeney said the police service would have whatever resources it needed to tackle the problem and the government would "do whatever the experts believe needs to be done".
The next two weeks will be spent working out the "logistics and legal detail" before introducing the new Bill to parliament.
"These are fresh, new, tough measures," Mr Bleijie said.