Queensland’s premier is keeping quiet about the Hells Angel challenge to his government’s anti-bikie laws.
Premier Campbell Newman remains tight-lipped about a High Court challenge to Queensland’s anti-bikie laws which he says have led to a dramatic drop in crime.
The United Motorcycle Council (UMC) is funding this week’s legal challenge to the contentious Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment legislation on behalf of 17 gangs.
The laws prohibit bikie gatherings in public and impose lengthy prison sentences on gang members convicted of crimes.
Attorneys-General from five states and territories and the Commonwealth back the legislation, which opponents say undermines the integrity of the courts and denies freedom of speech and natural justice.
Premier Campbell Newman wouldn’t comment on the case on Sunday, saying it was before the courts.
However he did say crime had dropped dramatically in Queensland under his government thanks in part to its “strong laws” against sexual predators and criminal gangs.
“We have seen crime figures drop,” he told reporters in Brisbane.
“It hasn’t happened in any other state, it’s happened in Queensland because we believe in making this the safest place in Australia to raise a family.”
If the UMC win in the High Court it won’t be the first time controversial laws introduced by the Newman government have been overturned.
In December the state’s Court of Appeal ruled invalid laws that gave the state attorney-general power to keep the worst sex offenders behind bars indefinitely.
The anti-bikie laws were introduced last October after a public brawl involving dozens of gang members erupted in a Gold Coast restaurant and spilled onto the street.
Hells Angel member Stefan Kuczborski is the face of the High Court challenge, which has been set down for hearing in Brisbane on Tuesday and Wednesday.