Man's jewellery draws attention of anti-bikie taskforce
A MACKAY man has drawn the attention of Queensland's anti-bikie taskforce by wearing "cool" rings linked to outlaw motorcycle gangs.
Alec Vincent Coulahan avoided the maximum penalty for wearing the prohibited jewellery adorned with the '1%' insignia when he faced Mackay Magistrates Court.
Under Queensland's Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment Act (VLAD), Coulahan could have been hit with a $5000 fine.
The 20-year-old appeared in the court on Monday, pleading guilty to public nuisance on October 17, 2017 at Mackay and to wearing prohibited items in public on October 21, 2017 at Ooralea.
Prosecutor Nathaniel Gillis said Coulahan (right) had been arrested over "other matters" and police found the rings, which were "silver in colour, with markings in the form of '13' and '1%'".
"Police have conducted investigations into these items and liaised with officers from Taskforce Maxima," Mr Gillis said.
The prosecutor said the markings '13' and '1%' "signify an outlaw status" and were linked to "outlaw criminal motorcycle gangs".
Mr Gillis said the Mackay Tactical Crime Squad searched Coulahan's home on January 23, after suspicions were raised.
Coulahan was not at home, but his mother told police "she knew he was associating with a male who she believed was a member of the Outlaws criminal motorcycle gang".
Police searched a gym bag in the back of a car and found the two rings belonging to Coulahan, who initially said he "found the rings and kept them".
Coulahan admitted to police he knew what the rings' insignia referred to and he received a warning for "consorting".
Mr Gillis said the public nuisance offence involved Coulahan instigating a fight with a man during a night out in Mackay city centre.
In defence of Coulahan, defence barrister Phillip Moore said his client, who had no relevant criminal history, spotted the rings online and bought them as he "thought it was cool".
Mr Moore added alcohol had played some part in the public nuisance offence and he said Coulahan "generally keeps out of trouble".
In his sentencing remarks, Mr Dwyer said Coulahan entered an early plea, but it was the second time he had been "violent near licensed premises" in recent times.
Coulahan was fined $1500 and banned from entering Mackay Safe Night Precinct until June 18. No convictions were recorded.