Skip to comments.Protest outside anti-terror hearings (DownUnder Moonbat ALERT!!!)
Posted on 07/23/2006 5:47:29 PM PDT by Aussie Dasher
THE nation's new anti-terror laws should be torn up and 13 men facing terrorism related charges in a Melbourne court should be dealt with under previous laws, civil rights protesters said today.
About 30 members of protest group Civil Rights Defence today gathered at Melbourne's court precinct, where the 13 men accused of being part of a terrorist group will return to a specially convened magistrates court pre-trial hearing.
The prosecution case against them was expected to be outlined at their committal hearing this morning.
The men, including alleged spiritual leader Abdul Nacer Benbrika, are each charged with being members of a terrorist group, while some are also charged with funding a terrorist organisation.
Civil Rights Defence spokeswoman Kim Bullimore said the men should have been charged under previous criminal legislation because the new laws were vague and designed to crack down on Australia's Muslim community.
"They (the 13) should be tried under existing legislation," Ms Bullimore said.
"If they are found guilty, they are found guilty. If not, then let them go.
"The Howard Government's new laws are a racist, political action to try to scare people and build support for their government.
"The current laws are vague and these people have effectively been charged with a thought crime and they could affect peace activists, journalists and a whole range of people (not engaged in acts of terror)."
Ten of the men involved in the hearing were arrested in pre-dawn police raids in Melbourne and Sydney last November, while another three were arrested in March this year.
In committal hearings, magistrates determine whether there is sufficient evidences for cases to go to trial.
They are normally held in magistrates courts, but the hearing was relocated to the Victorian County Court for security reasons.
People entering the court must show identification, and also face metal detector scans and bag checks.
There was a legal stand-off over whether lawyers for the accused men would undergo further security clearances, but this has been resolved.
So you have'em, too, huh?