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Qld Government shots at judges 'like apartheid South Africa'

Qld Premier Campbell Newman.
Qld Premier Campbell Newman. Brenda Strong

THE Australia Council for Civil Liberties president Terry O'Gorman has likened the State Government's criticism of the judiciary to that witnessed at the height of apartheid in South Africa.

Mr O'Gorman's comments came ahead of the Rally to Restore Democracy in Queensland today which will march on State Parliament to mark the first sitting day of 2014.

"The government's almost unrelenting attack on the judiciary, and now attacking criminal lawyers simply because they are carrying out their oath of office, is reminiscent of the attacks by the South African government at the height of the apartheid system on judges and lawyers," he said.

Mr O'Gorman said the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Act has come under fire from the legal fraternity as too broad, meaning ordinary people gathering in groups of three or more run the risk of lengthy mandatory sentences in solitary confinement.

"Rally to Restore Democracy in Queensland comes just days after Premier Campbell Newman raised the ire of the legal profession by attacking lawyers representing alleged criminal gangs as part of the criminal gang machine," he said.

Mr O'Gorman said the rally will also hear from independent MP Peter Wellington who is an outspoken critic of the State Government's VLAD legislation which has been presented to Queenslanders.

Topics:  apartheid bikie laws campbell newman vlad