Police wrongly target innocent riders

policeSenior police experienced in dealing with criminal motorcycle members are having difficulty picking between the innocent and potentially guilty, according to a riders‘ group boss.
Motorcycle Riders Association of Queensland president Chris Mearns says Police Commissioner Ian Stewart told a group of riders‘ representatives last Thursday that innocent riders were being caught up in the crackdown on bikies by naive and inexperienced police.
However, Chris says a group of riders on their way to a charity motorcycle rally and bike show on Saturday were targeted by a group of senior police which included experienced officers from Taskforce Hydra.
“Taskforce Hydra has been focused on the banned clubs for a considerable period prior to the introduction of the new laws and hence we would expect that they could tell the difference between the groups,” Chris says.
Under the new Vicious Lawless Associations Disestablishment (VLAD) Act introduced last month police are able to pull over riders in groups of three or more to check their credentials.
The Commissioner admitted at the meeting that innocent riders had been caught in this operation because banned clubs were now not wearing their colours and it was difficult for young and inexperienced police to distinguish banned riders from innocent recreational riders.
He promised to have these police trained to identify between clubs banned under the VLAD Act and ordinary riders.
“The evidence of these officers manning an interception unit that should, by any reasonable understanding, only be expecting to meet recreational riders is evidence that all the rhetoric that is being supplied about the police targeting is completely unreliable,” Chris says.
“This treatment of recreational riders is also contributing to a large reduction in the amount of riders willing to run the gauntlet of police harassment and thus is now adversely effecting not only the attendance at these charity events but is also affecting businesses that make their livelihood from recreational riders.”
The Brisbane Times reports today that Mt Glorious and Mt Mee cafes patronised by motorcycle riders had complained of a 20-30% downturn in trade since the VLAD Act was hastily introduced. It is also believed the meeting was told that the Ulysses Club which held its annual rally in Maryborough this year (pictured) is now considering whether to hold future AGM events in Queensland while their members are concerned about these issues.
“It is clearly apparent from statements that are coming from the Government and enforcement agencies that their only response is that they really don’t care and we will all have to put up with the loss of rights and possibly livelihood because their moral crusade is all-empowering and they do not need to listen to the wishes and needs of those that they have been adversely affected.”
Chris says this attitude and lack of resolution to these problems is “completely unacceptable”.
The meeting last Thursday with the Commissioner and Police Minister Jack Dempsey was also told that if riders wanted to avoid the undue attention of police they could register their group ride with the police much the same as the current “Party Line” to advise police of a party.
Chris and Australian Motorcycle Council representative Eva Cripps said after the meeting that this was not acceptable.
However, a representative of one of the many recreational rider groups present at the meeting claims there was no dissent to this suggestion during the meeting.
The representative, who did not wish to be named, also says in an email to MotorbikeWriter that the Commissioner pointed out in the meeting that some recreational riders look similar to outlaw bikies.
“Ian Stewart asked us to look around the room at each other and said most of us look like OMG members and so until his officers were ‘up close and personal’, it was difficult to see the difference,” he writes.
“He said it was a problem and later said it was particularly difficult for the younger officers who did not have the experience that older officers had. He said his officers were being trained and directed to be ‘Safe, Lawful and Professional’.”
He says the Commissioner told the meeting: “Our people are not going out to harass you. We don’t know whose who into the zoo yet. I’m sorry some of your people went through that (incidents described during the meeting) but there will be some more inconvenience.”


  1. And how well are our Emergency Services equipped to deal with the coming disasters? Our country cousins leaving the land after being trampled by the CSG and mining companies. Public schools being sold off, hospital and public housing waiting lists growing ever longer. Yep, there are so many more critical issues to address while our fearless leader struts around with multiple bodyguards and tens of thousands of your dollars being spent to protect him from a self – inflicted wound. Your democracy in action! And who voted for this mob???

  2. This is a very big state. There are thousands of important decisions to be made, hopefully supported by some knowledge and forethought. The state lives and breathes on these government processes to move on, getting education, health, exports, infrastructure and much much more that needs to be processed by the government. What would the man on the land be thinking? How can our Premier-Mayor give all these critical issues priority focus and achieve optimal results when he plays cops and robbers with a selected 0.6% criminality? Many people wouldn’t be able to sleep at night after such hands on engagements in detail. Every day the front page of the Liberal Bulletin (Courier Mail) carries the latest reports from Napoleon on the front line. Fearless statements about threats, etc.The rest of us prepare performance planning for our professions, looking at outcomes and how to best reach these. These publicity heroics on OMG’s in a teacup, at best would be an Issue. That issue needs decisions for a desired outcome articulated in a high level policy statement (what outcome should be arrived at). That’s ALL. Then it’s delegated to those with the competency, skill, experience, qualifications and responsibility, to establish HOW to best reach the outcome without unnecessary risks to anyone and the for police and judiciary to execute these policies and laws. The Premier should not even be mentioned in this one of thousands of Government’s domains. We need our Premier to govern the state, which is not a mayoral responsibility. There is so much that needs doing.
    Michael “Royal”

  3. Yes, you can bet your bippy that most, if not ALL illegal transactions are undertaken inside four walls behind closed doors, and to that end the perpetrators travel to these locations in tinted windowed limo’s, not on bikes, and if the truth were to be revealed, I would be certain the police would know exactly who they were after. Seems to me a great deal of our taxpayer dollars are being utulised in the wrong areas

    1. of course the police know. Most of the world to deal with OMG is by detectives anyway, while bikies are off bikes. Many of them are foreigners or recent citizens, and they are officially ethnic crime in NSW. Maybe a few deportations are in order

  4. Appreciate the fundamental democratic message of Lady Justice being Blind (see pic: http://www.ozemate.com/Lady-Justice.JPG) and why at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lady_Justice
    She’s now been corrupted, with the definition of our democratic rights “redefined” (Fact).

    It’s NO LONGER only about any crime the individual is suspected to have committed, but Justice and policing processes are directed by the government to judge WHO you are, who you associate with or simply what type of vehicle you use! People have been stopped and asked to remove their shirts to have tattoos photographed, here in Queensland!

    With some vehicle types, to avoid interference, you now need to call the police and advice that you and two mates are travelling and where! This requirement is based ONLY on the vehicle type you use (motorcycle)! What’ll they think of next! Something like another draconian idea of for instance, reducing road toll by having all cars older than 20 years crushed, or reduce children being bitten by not allowing dogs in parks and beaches anywhere?.

    The chief legal force to reduce corruption in Queensland and instigator of the criminal misconduct commission (CMC) , Dr Tony Fitzgerald, the other day severely critisised the government. This interview was censored by the papers and their news webs, into incoherent bits rather than the full critique he actually gave! Like he said there was no longer any point having a CMC, since it was now just essentially a government puppet anyway. He also referred to the childish suggestion of pink onesies for prisoners who belong to nominated associations.

    We’re having fundamental consitutional rights compromised, NOT to remove organised crime, not to in ANY way to recognise, let alone address, the demand for this vice, but just to replace one group of crims with another group; another Underbelly. The replacement underbelly must be laughing all the way to the bank.

    Tourists !! interstate and from overseas, now ask themselves if they really want to take their family to a place where Police now ask to take guns home and they are begging to be issued sub-machine guns, heavy duty armour and armoured vehicles! There goes tourism and the neigborhood, because of HOW this is all handled, by Politicians amateur crime fighters.

    I’ve ridden 245,000 k in 16 years. I’ve only noticed OMG riders on the roads a couple of times per year! They were NOT a common sight for most of us. Today, with this hunt on, none of them are stupid enough to be out riding anyway. Instead, Mum’s Corolla will do just fine.

    As long as crims don’t ride motorcycles, it’s all solved. Yea right.

    Reality, it’s falling all over you.

    Michael “Royal”

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