VIDEO: Springborg fires political shots over 'rat shooting'
QUEENSLAND LNP leader Lawrence Springborg yesterday said he'd been provided police advice that Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was wrong in saying people could discharge a firearm in their suburban home.
He was speaking in reference to the premier backing Rockhampton MP and Police Minister Bill Byrne, who admitted to using a firearm in his home to kill rats prior to the Port Arthur massacre in 1996.
Mr Springborg was in Rockhampton yesterday firing plenty of shots at the Labor government.
"The premier's office came out yesterday and said that it was legal for any Queenslander living in a suburban environment to discharge their firearm whenever they wanted in their own home," he said.
"That's illegal and I now am in possession of correspondence from the weapons licensing division of the Queensland Police Service to say it's illegal and has been illegal since 1996, so the premier should correct those irresponsible comments.
"We also know laws in Queensland dating back as far as 1994 say that it was illegal to discharge your firearm in such a way as to cause damage or alarm.
"This seems to me to be just a bit more serious than just shooting willy nilly at a few rogue rodents crawling through your rafters."
The police letter said the Weapons Act 1990 did not allow for the discharge of a firearm in a private suburban home.
Under the act, it is illegal to discharge a weapon on private land without the express consent of the owner.
In response to Mr Springborg's comments, the premier's office re-issued their Monday statement.
"Bill Byrne and Lawrence Springborg have conceded they have previously used firearms to shoot at rats," a Queensland Government spokesperson said.
"Bill Byrne said he used a firearm to shoot rats more than 20 years ago.
"The definition of 'landowner', which refers to 'the owner or occupier of rural land', was inserted into the Weapons Act 1990 in 1996 as part of the national response on gun laws following the Port Arthur tragedy.
"The Parliament's passage of the amending legislation in 1996 was after Mr Byrne undertook vermin control at his residence."