Investigation must look at links between union and gangs

ANY federal investigation into union behaviour must also look into their alleged cooperation with criminal gangs, according to Queensland Attorney General Jarrod Bleijie.

Mr Bleijie has spearheaded hard-line legislation in Queensland to target outlaw motorcycle gangs, including contentious laws that ban members from associating,

Following reports that construction union officials in Victoria and New South Wales were receiving bribes and had links to outlaw gangs, Mr Bleijie said Queensland was no exception.

"We have heard reports of extortion, blackmail and bribery occurring on Queensland construction worksites but the victims have been too afraid to speak out for fear of reprisals," he said.

Mr Bleijie said the Justice Department's Building Construction and Compliance Branch will work to ensure integrity in the state's construction industry.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott told reporters on Tuesday the government was preparing a judicial inquiry to look into union finances.



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