JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Timeline: How the police minister's career unravelled

Video settings

Please Log in to update your video settings

Video will begin in 5 seconds.

Video settings

Please Log in to update your video settings

Police commissioner broke news to Gibson

Former Police Minister David Gibson resigned after being told by the police commissioner about his driving infringements who was "duty bound to follow it through".

PT0M0S 620 349

David Gibson's dumping from Queensland Premier Campbell Newman's first cabinet came just 13 days after he was appointed as Police and Community Safety Minister, amid a planned investigation into claims he was caught speeding while driving unlicensed.

Here's how it all came to a head:

May 2011: Gympie MP David Gibson – then an opposition frontbencher – receives a speeding fine which he later says he simply forgot to pay.

Former police minister David Gibson fronts media in Gympie yesterday.

Former police minister David Gibson fronts media in Gympie yesterday. Photo: Amy Remeikis

Subsequent months: The matter is referred to the State Penalties Enforcement Registry, which chases up unpaid fines. Up to five letters are said to have been sent out to Mr Gibson's home during this process. Mr Gibson says he did not see any notices informing him of an imminent or actual licence suspension.

November 18: David Gibson's licence suspension takes force as a result of the failure to pay the fine.

February 16, 2012: A hire car is snapped speeding on the Bruce Highway. It is the final sitting day of Parliament before the election. Mr Gibson is later identified as the alleged driver of the vehicle at the time.

New police minister Jack Dempsey meets with police commissioner Bob Atkinson at the Fortitude Valley PCYC.

New police minister Jack Dempsey meets with police commissioner Bob Atkinson at the Fortitude Valley PCYC. Photo: Daniel Hurst

February 18: Mr Gibson's three-month licence suspension is due to expire.

March 24: The Liberal National Party storms into power with a crushing election victory over the Bligh Government, which has previously faced criticism over a failure to enforce ministerial accountability.

April 3: David Gibson is sworn in as Police and Community Safety Minister during a ceremony at Government House, Paddington.

April 5: Commissioner Bob Atkinson meets with Mr Gibson to tell him a “normal” cabinet-related security check suggests he has an unpaid fine that could trigger a licence suspension.

April 15: After subsequent checks reveal that the suspension has already occurred and that Mr Gibson was allegedly the driver of the speeding car on February 16, Mr Atkinson meets with the Minister again to tell him he now faces an investigation into unlicensed driving, with police officers required to formally interview Mr Gibson on the matter in the near future.

April 16: Mr Gibson meets with Campbell Newman to talk about the matter and offers his resignation after being told his cabinet position is no longer tenable.

April 17: Bundaberg MP Jack Dempsey is named as the new police minister. Mr Gibson says he failed to pay the speeding fine last year because he is human but insists he did not see any correspondence suggesting his licence was to be suspended.

(Timeline compiled based on details outlined by Campbell Newman, David Gibson and Bob Atkinson)

14 comments

  • I feel sorry for the poor fellow, but in reality how do you forget to pay a fine, how much else has he forgotten. The fact of the matter though is this, the labor government was full of crooks and they tried to cover it all up. Maybe one day we might hear about it all, when the only member of parliament who is in jail writes his book.

    Commenter
    Old Voter
    Location
    Reality Land
    Date and time
    April 18, 2012, 6:26AM
    • Five notifications and he had the temerity to claim he never saw any of them. And then to go on and play dumb is a bit much. Very foolish for a man in his position.

      Commenter
      bigyabby
      Location
      SEQld
      Date and time
      April 18, 2012, 8:26AM
      • Why anyone would not pay a fine I will never know!

        He did the crime and should suffer consequences!

        Commenter
        iceyone
        Location
        Brisbane
        Date and time
        April 18, 2012, 8:38AM
        • Perhaps he changed address 5 times.

          Perhaps the postie "lost" the letter 5 times.

          Perhaps he was out of the country 5 times.

          Perhaps as an Opposition Member of Parliament he couldn't afford to pay the fine (provided he had received one of the 5 letters).

          Between April 5 and April 15 perhaps he was waiting for a letter or two from the Queensland Police force.

          Now some of the above may look unfortunate but it should be remembered that Mr. Gibson was a former Army officer (as was honest Newman) so SNAFU is to be expected (also nodding at blind horses) and also the former General Manager of The Gympie Times, and one look at the amount of reporting of the Murdoch hacking scandal in the Murdoch family owned Courier Mail should give an indication as to how easy it is to "overlook" a simple speeding fine with approximately 5 letters attached.

          Commenter
          J. Fraser
          Location
          Queensland
          Date and time
          April 18, 2012, 9:46AM
          • I have also forgotten to pay a fine, however 'remembered' when the first reminder letter arrived. If he doesnt 'remember' 5 letters I would suggest that he gets himself checked for onset of dementia. It is obvious that Mr Gibson doesn't have the mental capacity to serve in government let alone as a minister

            Commenter
            max
            Location
            brisbane
            Date and time
            April 18, 2012, 9:56AM
            • My understanding of sper is that the licence is suspended indefinitively until payments are restarted on the fine. It sounds more like a demerit point suspension which is a result of accumulated points and lasts for three months if the driver doesn't elect for the good driving behaviour option.

              Commenter
              ozcorndog
              Date and time
              April 18, 2012, 9:57AM
              • I remember dealing with David Gibson when he was the Editor of the Guardian Newspaper in Bundaberg. I was involved in large Charity event that he had promised to promote. On the day we all found out that he had done nothing and we were left to pick up the pieces. It was a huge letdown for the Organization and very embarrasing for those involved. Gibson then disappeared from Bundaberg and resurfaced in Gympie. I have no sympathy for his current situation. I have to admire Campbell Newman for his quick action on removing him from his Cabinet.

                Commenter
                lesley8712
                Location
                Bundaberg Qld
                Date and time
                April 18, 2012, 10:09AM
                • The one saving grace in my eyes is that the man OFFERED his resignation, admitting his stupidity.

                  There is NO defence against the initial illegalities that led to the issue of the licence suspension, nor the speeding in a hire car, nor the lack of knowledge of follow up letters concerning the matters.

                  He is not your ordinary every day criminal type, but simply someone that has matured with a slightly unsavoury attitude of being an Alpha male, perhaps?

                  He is certainly not the first politician to believe his actions are ABOVE our laws; not to mention the ex High Court Judge that claimed someone else was driving illegally when it was him all along.

                  Privilege and corruption go together, but even the lower socio citizenry often use the term "you scratch my back...."

                  Commenter
                  John
                  Location
                  Rochedale
                  Date and time
                  April 18, 2012, 10:45AM
                  • "OFFERED"? I'd love to hear the actual conversation. Maybe it went like this.
                    Newman:"You realise I will have to dismiss you. I could be generous and let it sound like you resigned. What do you think?
                    Gibson:"Thank you. I offer to resign."
                    A saving grace?

                    Commenter
                    Ex-insider
                    Date and time
                    April 18, 2012, 3:46PM
                • Police Commissioner spoke to David Gibson on April 5 and then meets again with him on April 15 (10 days later).

                  About time the Police Commissioner started meeting with the other 30,000 Queenslanders with outstanding fines that have been referred to SPER.

                  Commenter
                  J. Fraser
                  Location
                  Queensland
                  Date and time
                  April 18, 2012, 11:01AM

                  More comments

                  Comments are now closed

                  Related Coverage

                  Featured advertisers

                  Special offers

                  Credit card, savings and loan rates by Mozo