Katter calls for change as white hot anger rages

Dec 29, 2022

Katter calls for change as white hot anger rages

Dec 29, 2022

The Queensland Youth Justice Minister must immediately commit to a radical overhaul of the State’s youth justice system if she is to retain her position and any semblance of respect from the community, Katter’s Australian Party Leader and Traeger MP Robbie Katter has said.


Speaking following the tragic Boxing Day murder of Brisbane mother Emma Lovell, allegedly by teen criminals who were out on bail, Mr Katter said the Queensland public would not tolerant a continuation of Labor’s “nothing to see here” approach.


He said there was white hot anger in relation to youth crime across Queensland, including in the regions.


“The horrific murder of Mrs Lovell in her own home has manifest the desperate and growing need to provide the public with leadership and real change,” Mr Katter said.

“The Premier told the public last election that she would keep us safe, and she has failed miserably in this regard and is now confronting an angry Queensland seeking safety in their home.


“This is her and the Youth Justice Minister’s final opportunity to turn this around.

“The Youth Justice Minister has claimed any criticism levelled at her over this is playing politics with the situation; what could be a more offensive response to the memory of Emma Lovell than more obfuscating around the issue rather than boldly addressing it with new direction?”


Mr Katter said the LNP Opposition was also failing to put forward decent solutions.

“It is disappointing that the only alternate view being offered by the Opposition is making breach of bail an offence because we have to get a lot tougher and effective than that; that is the ‘band-aid on the bullet wound’ sort of stuff,” he said.

“Breach of bail as an offence will only feed into the current and inadequate system that is no better than revolving door – perpetuating this and the the existing options of short stints in bail houses is putting your head in the sand, at best.”


The KAP is pushing for radical change in relation to the Youth Justice Act.

“Firstly, we need adult crimes to be accompanied by adult times – this includes rape, any offence that results in the death or grievous bodily harm of a person or any offence carries a penalty of life imprisonment.


“In these cases, the youth offender must stand trial as an adult and have the soft landings they consistently get access to removed.


“For those who are tried under the Youth Justice Act (YJA) for the remaining offences, they need to be dealt longer and harsher sentences, especially if they are recidivist offenders.

“These harsher laws under the YJA needs to be coupled with Relocation Sentencing, which is an alternative to detention, and is remote, long-term and must be designed to be highly rehabilitative.

“Paradoxically, access to this sentencing model may well represents the best opportunity for most of these kids to ever reform.

“We are calling on the Premier to pull her Youth Justice Minister in and implement these much-needed changes.


“If the current Youth Justice Minister cannot do this, she needs to be immediately replaced with someone who will.


The KAP is calling for the Palaszczuk Labor Government to:


1.Establish harsher and longer sentences under the Youth Justice Act, including: amendments to include an automatic presumption that any youth offender charged with the offence of rape, OR any offence that results in the death or grievous bodily harm of another human being, OR carries a penalty of life imprisonment, must stand trial as an adult; mandatory sentencing for youth offenders convicted of an offence of unlawful use of motor vehicle, burglary and enter premises’ and for cumulative sentences for recidivist offenders to be mandatory.


2.Fund a trial of the KAP’s Relocation Sentencing policy proposal as an alternative to traditional juvenile detention, which would see recidivist youth offenders ordered by courts to serve long-term sentences in highly rehabilitative environments that are strategically situated in remote, on-country locations (such as cattle stations);


3.Investigate the need for greater legal protections for people who, through no fault of their own, find they have to defend themselves, their family or their property from being targeted by criminals (including juveniles).