Australia: Protesters face jail under new Barnett Government law to “protect the rights of companies”

Protesters face jail under new Barnett Government law by Brendan Foster, March 11, 2015, WA Today
“The legislation creates a new offence of physical prevention of a lawful activity, providing police with the ability to charge a person who creates a physical barrier with the intent to prevent a lawful activity from being conducted.

“This offence will relieve the frustration and delay for workers and management at development sites and ensure people who partake in dangerous conduct will face consequences for their actions.”

Ms Harvey said it would also be illegal to manufacturer devices used in protests and the new law gave the power to police to confiscate them.

She said while people had the democratic right to protest, the government needed to “protect the rights of companies and employees”.

“This government is dedicated to making communities safer and protecting the rights of law abiding citizens by providing police with the resources they need to carry out their duties,” she said.

Opposition Attorney-General John Quigley said the new law was “extreme right-wing legislation”.

“It’s unbelieveable that during a period of record crime rate this government has introduced this legislation, and by introducing this legislation they say the evil they are going to stop is people putting thumb locks on bulldozers,” he said.

“This extreme and badly written legislation goes way beyond that and should be a worry to all farmers in Western Australia, amongst other people.

“This legislation provides a criminal offence for anyone who creates a physical barrier to lawful activity.

“So if a farmer locks his front gate in the face of a fracking company, he will be a criminal under the criminal code with a penalty of 12-month imprisonment or $12,000 fine. If he climbs onto his truck and police say he is a danger to himself, the penalty is doubled.

“Either the National Party don’t understand this law or they are just little poodles to a right-wing government.” [Like Harper and his wings?]

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