Three bikies have been convicted for walking to a car parked on the side of a Brisbane road, under Queensland laws that ban gang members congregating in public.
- Three bikies fined $750, given two-month suspended jail sentence for breaching anti-gang laws
- Magistrate John Costello said each of the men had “a criminal history that speaks for itself”
- Their lawyer criticised Queensland police for targeting them
Two of the men were fined $750 and another given a two-month suspended jail sentence in the Magistrates Court in Brisbane, after pleading guilty to the offence from December 2016.
The trio were convicted under the anti-bikie VLAD laws, brought in under the former LNP Government, which prohibit three or more members of a “criminal organisation” gathering in public.
The law will cease to exist by December 2018, after Labor scrapped it in favour of new legislation to target gang members who recruit others.
Magistrate John Costello said each of the men had “a criminal history that speaks for itself” but said a custodial sentence was the last resort in this instance.
It meant the Mongols members — Phillip Bruce Main, Tyrone Wilton Norman Poole and Victor John Wolfram — were able to walk free from court.
Police should investigate serious crime instead, lawyer says
Their lawyer, Mark Gatenby, criticised Queensland police for targeting his clients when they had travelled “about a metre-and-a-half” in public.
“They went to go to the airport, and in crossing the footpath to hop into the car they committed an offence,” he said.
“I think the people of Queensland would much prefer that really serious crime is being investigated rather than three blokes.”
Mr Gatenby said the group mistakenly believed the VLAD laws had been repealed when they committed the offence.
Investigators dropped charges against Main of wearing outlaw gang colours or paraphernalia, with police initially claiming he had worn a diamond “1 per cent” ring and a Mongols vest in public.
Wolfram continues to reside in Queensland, but Main and Poole have now moved to Victoria.
“I think they just enjoy riding their motorcycles without the dramas of this occurring,” Mr Gatenby said.
Main, Poole and Wolfram chatted and laughed loudly in the court complex before the sentencing, but made sure to leave separately and keep their distance from each other once outside to avoid breaching the laws again.