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UN Slams Australian Bikie Law

3
September
2009
  Posted at 03:15:00 PM
  File under  News
  Author: Carl Chaffee
  Location: Burgundy, France
click to see Australia on a map

Australia, after a spate of biker gang violence, have instituted some of the most severe motorcycle gang laws in the world. And it hasn't escaped the attention of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

The Australian government has outlawed outlaw biker gangs. If you belong to one, have their patches, then you will be arrested. According to the UN Office, this law is "extreme" and seen as "naive".

Australia-Biker-Gangs

According to the UN report, the law doesn't address the underlying issues, it just names (and "shames") the groups. According to the author of the report, University of Queensland law academic Andreas Schloenhardt, says the laws are not built on solid ideas. "It's really built on the naive belief that by creating a list of those groups, they will disintegrate and disappear, yet there is simply nothing to sustain this belief," he said. "[It's] extreme in the sense that they are open to abuse and particularly the way in which these declarations of organizations are made".

The law states that if a club is deemed illegal (it's illegal if they have criminal activities), then being a member or just being associated to the club, is illegal. According to Schloenhardt, Japan had similar laws in the 90's, but they backfired. The clubs went deeper underground, and there was no more control. Japanese bikers went around without their patches and colors, and then no one knew who was who anymore.

Looks like it's back to the drawing board for Australia. It's a big problem, and knee-jerk reactions don't solve it.

Via: ABC (Australia)



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