The Constitutionality of Queensland's Recent (Legal) War on 'Bikies'

Anthony Gray

Abstract


The Queensland government has responded to a perceived ‘criminal problem’ with motorcycle clubs by directly naming and declaring 26 motorcycle clubs. It supplements earlier legislation that provided for a court to make such an order, upon defined criteria. The effect of the declaration is that it becomes a criminal offence for participants in the declared organisation to associate. The legislation provides for minimum mandatory gaol terms for various offences, including the act of associating. This article argues that there are serious constitutional questions surrounding such legislation, including on the basis of Chapter III of the Constitution, and the extent to which a court’s institutional integrity is compromised by legislation of this nature.

Keywords


Australian Constitution, bikies, motorcycle clubs, court

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.21153/dlr2014vol19no1art208

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