Bikies put up Hells Angel tattooist in court battle against Campbell Newman’s criminal gang laws

TEST CASE: Hells Angel Steffen, who has no criminal convictions, will challenge Queensland’s bikie laws in the High Court. Source: Facebook

 

MEET the “straw man” Queensland bikies are banking on in a high-stakes bid to knock down the Newman Government’s criminal gang laws.

The Courier-Mail can reveal that Hells Angels tattooist “Steffen” will be the face of a High Court challenge by peak body the United Motorcycle Council.

Legal sources said the Poland-born bikie – who is believed to have no businesses, properties or major assets – is a “smart” choice for legal action that could cost the loser up to $500,000.

The tattooist has no recorded criminal convictions but is barred from working in his former home state of NSW under laws banning bikies from the industry there from last year.

He has not been arrested for any crime under Queensland’s bikie crackdown but risks being again banned from the profession here when similar laws come into effect in July.

The bikie is one of only four known card-carrying Hells Angels in Queensland.

Steffen, who settled in Australia after his family fled communist Poland, is understood to have been a Hells Angel for about five years.

A legal source said the UMC was “effectively putting up a straw man” for a case in which the State Government was “highly likely” to seek to recover legal costs if the bid failed. As a “straw man” with few assets, Steffen would have little to lose.

It is understood the UMC, which is funding the challenge with the help of public donations, including some from union sources, is poised to lodge its challenge next week.

The UMC’s legal team includes Ken Fleming QC, who helped Dr Jayant Patel successfully defend a manslaughter charge in 2013, and barrister Wayne Baffsky, who helped a NSW Hells Angel vanquish similar anti-gang laws in 2011.

Mr Baffsky said all court cases involving the new laws – including arrests under anti-association laws – would likely be postponed until the High Court case was decided.

Members of the Finks club still have an unpaid costs order hanging over them after their unsuccessful High Court challenge to the previous Queensland government’s criminal organisation laws last year.

It is not clear if the order will be enforced, as the club no longer officially exists in Australia after most members joined the Mongols.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet
Country: 
Group / Club: 
News Article written by: 
Josh Robertson
Source of News article: 
theaustralian.com.au




Related Articles


Elk Hunt   Fly Fishing Guide
  Silver Stock
  Biker News

Disclaimer: The opinions in this article are solely those of the writer, and may not reflect the beliefs of anyone at the Biker News Network/Outlaw Biker World. This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. If you believe that your copyrighted work has been copied in a way that constitutes copyright infringement and is accessible on this site or through this service, you may notify our copyright agent, as set forth in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (DMCA). For your complaint to be valid under the DMCA, it must meet certain criteria, and you must Click Here to contact acting agent.