A nationally consistent approach to bikie gangs and organised crime will be implemented after the state and territory attorneys-general met in Canberra yesterday.
The various pieces of legislation will not be “word for word”, but the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General has confirmed it has agreed on a “nationally consistent set of principles that will prevent any jurisdiction becoming a safe haven for bikie gangs”, Federal Attorney-General Robert McClelland said last night.
A range of laws will be introduced, while amendments to the Corporations Law at the federal level will be considered today. A number of jurisdictions have already implemented laws at this level, McClelland said.
“We’re confident that this framework will significantly curtail organised crime, including bikie crime,” he said.
The new laws and amendments will provide greater law enforcement powers, including interrogation, seizure of assets, exchange of criminal intelligence, cooperation in respect to controlled operations, and the protection of witnesses, the federal A-G said.
New South Wales, meanwhile, is looking to receive backing at the SCAG meeting today for corporations law to be amended to that those found to have been involved in gang related activity would be excluded from directorships and secretaryships of corporations.
“It’s important that the Commonwealth be involved, that there be a sharing of information, and that there be a coordinated response,” NSW Attorney General John Hatzistergos said ahead of the meeting today.
Hatzistergos has also signaled that NSW is prepared to learn from other jurisdictions if they have strengths that the state can borrow from. Likewise, he said other states could borrow from legislation implemented by NSW.