In Law & Order

Queensland Shadow Attorney General Lawrence Springborg

Bikeway Rapist Sentence Slashed

Victor P Taffa

The sexual predator who terrorised Brisbane’s bikeways for more than two years will serve less than a year in prison for each of his crimes thanks to Queensland’s soft sentencing laws.

Deputy Opposition Leader and Shadow Attorney-General Lawrence Springborg said Colless’ initial 25 year sentence, which had been reduced to 16 years by the Court of Appeal, paled in comparison to the 55 year sentence handed down to the ringleaders of the New South Wales gang rapes.

“Colless was a serial sexual predator who held the women of Brisbane in a grip of fear for more than two years.” Mr. Springborg said.




“He pleaded guilty to 18 offences, but now will only spend 16 years in jail — that’s less than a single year for each of the rapes, attempted rapes, sexual assaults and assaults he committed against 11 women.”

“How can the Premier, who claims to have worked in a shelter for women who have been sexually assaulted, still believe that our sentencing laws are tough enough?” Mr. Springborg demanded to know.

“The women who were targeted by Colless have to live with what he did for the rest of their lives, yet he will serve less than a year for each of the crimes he was sentenced for.”

“The most prolific serial offender in Queensland’s recent history could be out on the streets again in a little more than 12½ years.” Mr. Springborg said.

“Clearly Queensland’s sentencing laws for serious violent and sexual crimes need to change.”

Fast Facts

  • NSW gang rape ringleaders were sentenced to 55 years, with a non-parole period of 40 years.
  • The NSW Government introduced tough sentencing laws following the case, to ensure the sentencing reflected community expectations.
  • Colless was convicted on 18 sexual offences, 5 counts of rape, 5 counts of attempted rape, 6 counts of sexual assault and 2 counts of assault, and will serve the equivalent of just 10 months per offence.

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