State Government to seize drug dealers' cash and assets

THE Queensland underworld is now on notice - the state government will take all criminals' assets and property if convicted of drug trafficking.

Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said new laws coming into effect on Friday would tighten the state's trafficking and unexplained wealth laws.

He said the "lavish lifestyles" of the state's "Mr Bigs" were paid for with the pain and suffering, with illicit drug use costing the state more than $1 billion a year.

Mr Bleijie said the new laws would force all convicted drug traffickers 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," he said.

Some of the proceeds of such property would go to refund the "cost" of their crimes, while their dependants can apply for financial support so they didn't suffer "for the bad decisions of their parents".

Mr Bleijie said the seizure of trafficker's property and assets was a new deterrent to help prevent such crimes, and it would force the "crime bosses" to also explain their wealth.

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

"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."



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