Premier Campbell Newman has not apologised over police harassment of a group of riders on their way to the funeral of a 70-year-old woman who died of cancer. (Read the story.)
Instead of apologising for that and police video taping the motorcycle cortege, he has gone on the attack, claiming that the Townsville police were not notified about the motorcycle involvement in the funeral and declaring innocent riders will be “intercepted from time to time”.
“Townsville Police regularly conduct traffic enforcement operations across the city and District,” his office says in an online comment.
“Inquiries made reveal there has been no recorded contact with Townsville District Police advising of any motorcyclists providing a guard of honour for any funeral in the last three weeks.” The Premier’s “team” commented on his Facebook site, painting a grim future for innocent riders.
Their comment says: “Townsville Police have conducted operations on Criminal Motorcycle Gangs, members and associates, which has resulted in a number of people being prosecuted in relation to a range of traffic and criminal offences.
“Through the course of normal policing and traffic operations the drivers of both motor vehicles and motorcycle’s will be intercepted from time to time.”
So, “from time time” innocent riders will have to put up with the insulting, insensitive, discriminatory manhandling by police officers who may want us to partially disrobe to see if we have any tattoos and to then take photographs of them. And don’t expect an apology.
The Queensland Police Service has also issued a statement saying that “Law-abiding motorcyclists and members of the community have nothing to fear from this increased police presence and operational activity”.
It also states that the Townsville riders were “stopped for a short period and advised police they were attending a funeral”.
“Police received no complaints from the riders at the time of the intercept.”
The Australian Motorcycle Council has established a fighting fund to support any High Court challenge to any of the anti-bikie legislations. To read more about the fund and to donate, click here.