Bikie colours’ crack­down to face test

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS - PA­TRICK GEE

NEW laws crack­ing down on out­law mo­tor­cy­cle gangs by ban­ning colours and in­signia were in­tro­duced yes­ter­day.

The move pre­cedes an Out­laws Mo­tor­cy­cle Club me­mo­rial ride in Tas­ma­nia to­mor­row — ex­pected to draw rid­ers from in­ter­state.

The laws tar­get five out­lawed gangs: Ban­di­dos MC; Out­laws MC; The Devil’s Hench­men; Black Uh­lans MC; and Rebels Mo­tor­cy­cle Club.

Po­lice Min­is­ter Mark Shel­ton said the law was a new tool for po­lice to use to keep the com­mu­nity safe from gangs “do­ing the wrong thing in the com­mu­nity”.

“From this point on, those out­lawed mo­tor­cy­cle gangs will not be able to wear their colours in pub­lic or in fact dis­play them in pub­lic.

“This is about keep­ing Tas­ma­ni­ans safe and mak­ing sure the pro­cesses that out­law mo­tor­cy­cle gangs use to in­tim­i­date the com­mu­nity will not be avail­able are far as their in­signia goes.”

Mr Shel­ton said the leg­is­la­tion brought Tas­ma­nia into line with the main­land states ex­cept the ACT and made sure that Tas­ma­nia was not seen as a “safe haven” for out­law gangs.

Those who break the new law will be slapped with a fine of an amount not yet dis­closed and the fine will be in­creased for re­peat of­fend­ers.

Tas­ma­nia Po­lice North­ern District Com­man­der Brett Smith said there was a “bucket load” of re­search and ev­i­dence to sug­gest that gangs wear­ing colours, par­tic­u­larly in groups, cre­ated ap­pre­hen­sion in the com­mu­nity.

“We don’t want our com­mu­nity to live in fear be­cause of the be­hav­iour of what these crim­i­nal gangs do,” he said.

“Out­law mo­tor­cy­cle gangs, they com­mit crime, they as­sault peo­ple and they deal in drugs.

“They have a cul­ture of vi­o­lence and they do not like po­lice.”

Com­man­der Smith said up to 100 Out­laws MC mem­bers could travel to Tas­ma­nia for a me­mo­rial ride to­mor­row

He said po­lice would be con­duct­ing checks, have “con­tin­gen­cies” in place and be sup­ported by of­fi­cers of the Aus­tralian Fed­eral Po­lice’s Na­tional Anti-Gang Squad.

Com­man­der Smith said the gangs have been con­tacted to “make sure they fully know what the law is”.

He said this week­end’s ride was an op­por­tu­nity for Out­laws MC to demon­strate “as they claim, that they are lawabid­ing cit­i­zens ... if they’re not, we will take quite af­fir­ma­tive ac­tion. We will seize items, we will charge peo­ple.”

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