Page 1647 - Week 06 - Thursday, 23 July 2020

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I have also said that it was just a matter of time before somebody was killed because of this government’s failure to implement these laws and that, when someone was killed, this government would have blood on its hands. Now, since this government failed to introduce anti-consorting laws, we witness a fourfold increase in bikie gang numbers and a war on our streets that has led to unprecedented violence.

We have seen violent fights between rival bikie gangs in public restaurants. We have seen drive-by shootings. We have seen a woman shot in her home. We have seen a man shot in his home. We have seen one man shot in his legs and another shot in his groin. We have seen shots fired into homes with children inside. We have seen firebombings next to childcare centres. We have seen homes of innocent members of our community invaded by bikies and burned to the ground. We have seen vehicles and houses set alight. We have seen homes of innocent Canberrans destroyed. We have seen an innocent man narrowly missed by a high-velocity bullet fired into his home. We have seen a six-year-old girl trying to use a garden hose to put out cars set on fire on her property while an adult victim lay bleeding from gunshot wounds. We have seen gangs from Sydney maraud across Canberra, wearing their colours with impunity.

This is happening because of the Labor government’s failure to act where every other territory and state leader has. This has been enacted in one form or another across Australia by Liberal and Labor leaders.

In relation to the death of the president of the Comancheros early on Sunday morning, the matter is being investigated. At this stage I draw no conclusions. I simply quote what is being reported on the public record, in the media. In an article titled “‘Soft’ anti bikie stance let slain Comanchero be at bar”, the Daily Telegraph said:

Court records show that Mr Ulavalu had been obeying bail conditions to not associate with gang members in public until [the magistrate] lifted the conditions last week, giving Mr Ulavalu the green light to be at the bar with other gang members.

The previous conditions not only banned Mr Ulavalu from being with other Comanchero members in public but also members of the rival Nomads. The previous conditions mirrored interstate anti-consorting laws and for a time had also seen Mr Ulavalu banned from all licensed premises.

Police sources said it appeared unlikely Mr Ulavalu would have been at the bar at the time the violence broke out had they remained in place or had he been the subject of anti-consorting laws.

If you do not believe me, Madam Assistant Speaker, about the need for these laws, then heed the words of a previous Chief Police Officer. In a 2017 article titled “Canberra’s lack of anti-gang laws attracting bikies” then Chief Police Officer Christine Saunders warned:

Canberra has become attractive to bikies because it does not have the same anti-gang laws the rest of the eastern seaboard does …

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