NSC Covid licence Action update

VIC COVID UPDATE: Had your licence suspended or cancelled?

3 October 2020

IN THIS BLOG, we provide an update on the NSC’s move to seek an injunction against Victoria Police for its threat against shooters who cop a COVID fine – and urge more affected shooters to come forward.

Victorian COVID injunction

As you may be aware, the NSC has been gathering what it needs to seek an injunction against Victoria Police’s threat to cancel, suspend or reprimand shooters who receive a COVID fine.

Whilst we have examples, the more cases we have the stronger the NSC’s legal case becomes.

The advice from our barrister who we are funding through your generosity is that we have ‘a good case and a good argument to support it’ . We could argue strongly that the Victorian Supreme Court order LRD immediately reinstate any licence suspended or cancelled on the basis that a licence holder is “ not a fit and proper” person to hold a firearms licence on the basis of a single COVID-19 fine being issued.

Whilst we have heard stories of other shooters who have had their licences returned - which is great news - the irony is that it makes the prospects of obtaining an injunction harder to get.

Applying for a Supreme Court injunction involves arguing there is a “pattern of similar behaviour” across the board and then arguing why it needs to be stopped “right now” . The greater the evidence of LRD behaving badly, the better the odds of bringing them under control. However if they are starting to return licences, then that’s great, but it reduces the prospects of getting the injunction. It would be great if VicPol has changed its behaviour but also a shame if we can’t have ‘our day in court’.

The NSC has been told from reliable sources, that just like with the gun shop closures earlier this year, LRD did NOT seek advice from the Victorian Government Solicitors Office before acting, as is expected of all government agencies.

All indications point to the LRD behaving outside the proper legal framework and we have already shown they are prepared to mislead and lie to their own minister and shooting organisations.

Importantly actions like this have only been possible because of your support which has helped us take these steps with one of Victoria’s top barristers.

Have you had your licence suspended / cancelled due to COVID?

**** If you have had your licence suspended or cancelled (not reprimanded) due** only to COVID **, then please let us know as soon as possible ****

For us to obtain the injunction, it is vital that the only issue affecting you is the COVID fine: we can’t help if your problem is that your licence has been suspended by other complicating factors such as intervention orders or other firearm offences – only COVID fines.

Your Notice of Suspension (or cancellation) must therefore point to only receiving a COVID fine. If that is you, please let us know today at [email protected].

One of a growing number of legal fights

The NSC’s other legal fights continue. While they are expensive, they are starting to pay good dividends.

As with the COVID threat, we have seen Police and government in WA, QLD and Victoria back down on their gun shop closures. While the ‘damage was done’ in the early days, the good news is that the various police agencies have not continued their closure strategies.

If you want to support these fights, then click here to join the NSC today.

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