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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
    The Honourable Jarrod Bleijie

    Mr Bigs beware from today

    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice
    The Honourable Jarrod Bleijie

    Friday, September 06, 2013

    Mr Bigs beware from today

    Queensland’s criminal Mr Bigs and drug traffickers face losing everything with some of the toughest laws in Australia coming into effect today.

    Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie said the Newman Government’s drug trafficking and unexplained wealth laws send a clear message to criminals.

    “These criminals’ lavish lifestyles are paid for with pain and suffering, with illicit drug use costing Queensland more than $1 billion a year,” Mr Bleijie said.

    “Now they will be paying back to the community.

    “From today, convicted drug traffickers will be forced to forfeit all their property, whether it was obtained legally or illegally.

    “That also includes gifts they have given to people in the six years before the offence.

    “There will be protection for an offender’s dependants. They will be able to apply for financial support on the grounds of hardship as they shouldn’t suffer for the bad decisions of their parents.

    “Seizing drug traffickers’ property will set another deterrent and also refund some of the tragic cost their crimes inflict on the community.

    “Our tough legislation also targets the Mr Bigs of the criminal underworld.

    “The crime bosses who pull the strings in the background will be forced to explain where all their wealth has come from, but if they can’t, they lose it.

    “In the past, they could rake in the money and let lower level criminals take the fall.

    “From today, if the State can prove on the balance of probabilities that there is reasonable suspicion a person has been involved in a crime, the onus will be on the individual to prove they obtained their property and money legitimately.

    “Casting the confiscation net wider is another way to tackle organised crime and ensures that

    Queensland will not become a safe haven for those wishing to hide their ill-gotten wealth.

    “These tough changes not only come down hard on the people involved in organised crime, the sale of the seized property will also go towards important programs and services for Queenslanders.”

    [ENDS] 6 September 2013

    Media Contact: Ashley McDermid 0412 731 355 or Katherine Hornbuckle 0402 862 351